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Patricia Daly

Dr. Patricia Daly is the Chief Medical Health Officer and Vice President of Public Health for Vancouver Coastal Health in British Columbia, Canada. She is also a Clinical Professor in the School of Population and Public Health in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of British Columbia.1)

Her total compensation from VCH in the 2020/2021 fiscal year was $356,056.00, up 4.97% from $339,215.00 in 2019/2020 and up 3.01% from 2018/2019.2)


Daly obtained her medical degree from the University of Toronto in 1985. She later underwent further specialty training at McGill University and the University of Toronto.


BC Centre for Disease Control

After moving to Vancouver in 1993, Dr. Daly worked for two years at the BC Centre for Disease Control.

MUSE Collaboratory

In her role as CMHO for VCH, Daly is a “Principal Knowledge User” of the MUSE Collaboratory research sharing program.3)

Providence Health Care

In 2016, Daly publicly called on the Vancouver City Council to provide funding for a new mental health and addictions hub at Providence Health Care's St. Paul's Hospital in response to the fentanyl crisis which had claimed 300 lives at that time.4)

Five years later in October 2021, the Province of British Columbia approved $132 million over three years for the expansion.5) 6)

University of British Columbia

Daly is a Clinical Professor in the School of Population and Public Health in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of British Columbia.7)

Vancouver Coastal Health

Daly is Chief Medical Health Officer and Vice President of Public Health for Vancouver Coastal Health in British Columbia, Canada. She took on this role in September 2007.8)


Daly was the Medical Health Officer during the 2003 SARS outbreak. She co-authored a letter to the British Medical Journal detailing the guidelines developed for healthcare workers in regards to personal protective equipment (PPE), along with colleagues from the Workers' Compensation Board of British Columbia, the Occupational Health and Safety Agency for Healthcare, and provincial experts in public health, infection control and infectious disease from Vancouver Coastal Health and Vancouver Hospital and Health Sciences Centre.9) 10)

They found that despite preference for disposable N95 respirators, they were largely ineffective (33%) due to poor use and lack of training resulting in an incomplete fit.11) In particular, hand hygiene resulted in “autoinoculation”, meaning the act of putting on, adjusting and taking off the masks caused infection. While N95s continued to be required for “high-risk” patient interactions, the guidelines were geared to “reduce the exclusive use of fit tested N95 respirators without diminishing worker safety.” They also required the use of goggles, safety glasses or face shields. It was further noted that the N95 masks were found to be equally ineffective overall as surgical masks which were listed in the guidelines as “acceptable” when interacting with patients who were stable and improving.

Overall, effectiveness was shown to be dangerously lacking in the absence of formal training on their use.

In a 2006 retrospective article, Daly and several fellow SARS alumni noted that the Vancouver region had only 5 confirmed cases of the illness for the extent of the outbreak. They applauded the Vancouver team as having been well-prepared for the virus and were more critical of the Greater Toronto Area, where Bonnie Henry, Allison McGeer and others cut their teeth.12) They observe that Vancouver receives roughly 2000 air passengers from Hong Kong and Mainland China daily, making it “a potential gateway to North America for emerging pathogens from Asia.” They conclude by suggesting that periodic audits of preparedness should be conducted. The study was funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and the BC Centre for Disease Control.

Pandemic Influenza

In her first year as CMHO of VCH, Daly co-authored an article in BC Medical Journal titled “Introduction to pandemic influenza”.13) The paper is notable due to the following observations:

  • Daly explains that while predicting the timing and severity of “the next” pandemic is not possible, but overall impact can be estimated using knowledge of past pandemics;
  • Pandemics have occurred every 10 to 40 years over the last 400 years;
  • While the virus in question in the paper is influenza, Daly asserts that such preparations would assist physicians in addressing other public health emergencies“;
  • Daly describes the process of viral mutation that occurs due to the absence of a mechanism for correcting mistakes that occur during replication, resulting in changes to surface proteins that cause “antigenic drift”, and more substantial changes that result in “antigenic shift”.
  • Acknowledges that new viral strains can occur years after a previous strain existed, just like SARS;
  • Says the new strain must “also cause significant human illness” in addition to being easily transmissible from person to person;
  • Addresses antivirals and antibiotics multiple times, including to treat primary and secondary pneumonia (which is a factor in COVID-19 illness);
  • Discusses the concept of a “benign pandemic” characterized by low morbidity and mortality because of pre-existing immunity in most age groups;
  • Describes immune protection generated by previous strains that protect against future infection with the same viral subtype;
  • References the 1976 swine flu outbreak that prompted rapid vaccine development, which resulted in unnecessary injuries and deaths for a small outbreak that never resulted in a pandemic;
  • Asserts that the results from increased viral surveillance must not be interpreted to mean a heightened level of risk exists;
  • While acknowledging the potential need to change approach depending on the nuances of the pandemic viral strain, the use of “integrated surveillance systems”, “antimicrobials and antivirals, and appropriate and consistent infection control practices” can limit the impact of the pandemic “until a vaccine can be produced and delivered”;
  • The paper alleges that a vaccine is the only “definitive intervention” and thus, support should be given to vaccine research immediately.

Additionally, Daly discloses receiving funds from unspecified vaccine-producing pharmaceutical companies.


On January 31, 2020, Daly advised individuals returning from China did not need to isolate if they weren't experiencing “coronavirus symptoms”.14)

She appeared in an online May 25, 2020 COVID-19 Town Hall event hosted by the Government of British Columbia on Facebook, moderated by MLA George Chow and MLA Teresa Wat.15)

In July 2020, Daly co-authored a study that found tremendously weak evidence of surface transmission of SARS-CoV-2. Despite the admitted well-quality of evidence, the study recommends increasing surface cleaning procedures to combat the outbreaks of COVID-19 in care homes.16)

In response to criticism of lack of transparency surrounding COVID-19 outbreaks in nursing homes, Daly argued that public release of that information is delayed to allow time to communicate with families of the deceased. She also said that “a single authority on the pandemic is necessary to avoid confusion,” deferring to Chief Medical Officer of Health Bonnie Henry.17)

During a VCH staff training video call on September 20, 2021, Daly acknowledged that the vaccine passport program in British Columbia was intended to motivate more people to take a COVID-19 vaccine product. “The vaccine passport requires people to be vaccinated to do certain discretionary activities, such as go to restaurants, movies, gyms. Not because these places are high risk. We are not actually seeing COVID transmissions in these settings, it is really to create an incentive to improve our vaccination coverage.”18) The call was posted in full to YouTube as an unlisted video titled “Vaccine Updates & Build Back Better”, a frequently-used propaganda phrase globally.

On October 22, 2021, Daly reminded the Vancouver City Council that the opioid crisis in Vancouver was still ongoing, citing 3,000 deaths versus 1,800 who died “from the coronavirus” in the same period.19)

On February 16, 2022, Daly, Mark Lysyshyn, Meena Dawar and Michael Schwandt published a letter to University of British Columbia President Santa Ono advising against de-registering students who have not declared their vaccination status. They also request that UBC end testing protocols for all staff, students and faculty, acknowledging the multiple levels of harm caused by public health measures.20)

Vancouver/Richmond Health Board

After working at the BCCDC, Daly worked at Vancouver/Richmond Health Board as a Medical Health Officer and Director of Communicable Disease Control. She continued in this role as it was reorganized into Vancouver Coastal Health in 2001.

In this role, Daly published research discussing universal Hepatitis B vaccine uptake in infants.21) She further advocated for vaccinating high-risk populations for both Hepatitis A and C.22)

In January 2000, Daly co-authored a discussion paper examining the benefits and risks of imposing a reporting requirement for HIV infections.23) The paper evaluated how Schedule A of the Health Act Communicable Disease Regulation could be used to enact this mandate. The B.C. Communicable Disease Policy Advisory Committee reviewed the issue and failed to reach a consensus, but Provincial Health Officer Perry Kendall performed his own review and recommended the reporting be required as discussed. Daly co-authored an announcement as such published in April 2003.24)


Pandemic Preparedness

Daly was part of a team that published “A Template for Urban Management of Biological Exposures and Casualties”, asserting a “coordinated response in a multi-jurisdictional environment is required to protect Canadians from accidental or terrorist-initiated exposure to biological agents.”25) The report was published in the journal Prehospital and Disaster Medicine in September 2000, one year before the 2001 Anthrax Attacks that killed 5 and infected 17 people in the United States.26)


Daly has received research funding from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), the Peter Wall Institute, the Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research, Providence Research and the Vancouver Coastal Health Research Institute.27)

She and her colleagues were funded (through their institutions) for studies on and related to “global expansion of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) under the framework of HIV treatment as prevention (TasP)” at a population level by the British Columbia Ministry of Health, the National Institute of Drug Abuse, AbbVie, Boehringer Ingelheim, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Gilead Sciences, Janssen, Merck, ViiV Healthcare, BC Ministry of Health Services, BC Ministry of Healthy Living and Sport, National Institutes of Health, and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research. The paper advocates for policy positions on HIV/AIDS as taken by the World Health Organization and UNAIDS.28) 29)

1) , 8)
Dr. Patricia Daly. Vancouver Coastal Health. Retrieved February 1, 2022, from
Ballem, P. (2021, May 24). Public Sector Employer Act – Section 14.8(3) Public Sector Executive Compensation Reporting Form 2020/21. Public Sector Compensation; Government of British Columbia.
Patricia Daly - MUSE Profile. MUSE Collaboratory. Retrieved February 1, 2022, from
Yeung, L. (2016, June 15). Dr. Patricia Daly calls for new mental health hub to fight Vancouver’s fentanyl crisis. CBC News; CBC/Radio-Canada.
St. Paul’s Hospital to benefit from provincial investment in substance use care. (2021, October 13). The Daily Scan.
Funding strengthens B.C.’s system of substance-use treatment, recovery care | BC Gov News. (2021, October 13). Government of British Columbia.
Patricia Daly. School of Population and Public Health (SPPH). Retrieved February 1, 2022, from
Yassi, A., Noble, M. A., Daly, P., & Bryce, E. (2003). Severe acute respiratory syndrome: Guidelines were drawn up collaboratively to protect healthcare workers in British Columbia. BMJ, 326(7403), 1394-b-1395.
SARS Science Committee. (2003, May 7). Guidelines for the Acute Management of the patient with SARS in the Hospital Setting. Occupational Health and Safety Agency for Healthcare.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). (1998). Laboratory Performance Evaluation of N95 Filtering Facepiece Respirators, 1996. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep., 47(48), 1045–1049.
Skowronski, D. M., Petric, M., Daly, P., Parker, R. A., Bryce, E., Doyle, P. W., Noble, M. A., Roscoe, D. L., Tomblin, J., Yang, T. C., Krajden, M., Patrick, D. M., Pourbohloul, B., Goh, S. H., Bowie, W. R., Booth, T. F., Tweed, S. A., Perry, T. L., McGeer, A., & Brunham, R. C. (2006). Coordinated Response to SARS, Vancouver, Canada. Emerging Infectious Diseases, 12(1), 155–158.
Daly, P., & Gustafson, R. (2007). Introduction to pandemic influenza. British Columbia Medical Journal, 49(5), 240–244.
Dr. Patricia Daly (@VCHDrDaly). (2020, January 31). Those recently returning from China do not need to self-isolate themselves if they are not experiencing #coronavirus symptoms. See our latest FAQs at… [Tweet]. Twitter.
Government of British Columbia. (2020, May 25). Vancouver Coastal Health Authority Virtual Townhall. Facebook.
Nelson, A., Kassimatis, J., Estoque, J., Yang, C., McKee, G., Bryce, E., Hoang, L., Daly, P., Lysyshyn, M., Hayden, A. S., Harding, J., Boraston, S., Dawar, M., & Schwandt, M. (2020). Environmental Detection of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) from Medical Equipment in Long-Term Care Facilities undergoing COVID-19 Outbreaks. American Journal of Infection Control.
Boynton, S., & Aylesworth, L. (2021, January 11). Metro Vancouver’s top doctor defends response, transparency amid COVID-19 outbreaks. Global News.
VCHStaffEducation. (2021, September 20). COVID-19 Virtual Medical Staff Forum: Vaccine Updates & Build Back Better. YouTube.
CBC News. (2021, October 22). Vancouver’s chief medical officer recommends compassion club model to reduce illicit drug deaths. CBC News; CBC/Radio-Canada.
Daly, P., Lysyshyn, M., Dawar, M., & Schwandt, M. (2022, February 16). Re: UBC plans to de-register students who have not declared their COVID-19 vaccination status. University of British Columbia; Vancouver Coastal Health.
Dawar, M., Dobson, S., Kallos, A., LaJeunesse, C., Weatherill, S., & Daly, P. (2002). Measuring Hepatitis B Uptake in a New Universal Infant Program. Canadian Journal of Public Health / Revue Canadienne de Sante’e Publique, 93(4), 281–284.
Daly, P. (2000). Hepatitis C and the British Columbia experience with hepatitis A vaccination. Journal of Viral Hepatitis, 7, 23–25.
Weatherill, Shelagh & Daly, Patricia. (2003). Reporting HIV infections to be mandatory. Nursing BC / Registered Nurses Association of British Columbia. 35. 21.
Bryce, E. A., Bowie, W., Constanzo, G., Daly, P., de Grace, M., Dobson, S., Isaac-Renton, J., Maddigan, H., Morshed, M., & Roscoe, D. (2000). A Template for Urban Management of Biological Exposures and Casualties. Prehospital and Disaster Medicine, 15(S2), S92–S92.
FBI History. (2016). Amerithrax or Anthrax Investigation. Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Richardson, L., Laing, A., Milloy, M-J., Maynard, R., Nosyk, B., Marshall, B., Grafstein, E., Daly, P., Wood, E., Montaner, J., & Kerr, T. (2016). Protocol of the impact of alternative social assistance disbursement on drug-related harm (TASA) study: a randomized controlled trial to evaluate changes to payment timing and frequency among people who use illicit drugs. BMC Public Health, 16(1).
Montaner JSG, Lima VD, Harrigan PR, Lourenc¸o L, Yip B, et al. (2014) Expansion of HAART Coverage Is Associated with Sustained Decreases in HIV/AIDSMorbidity, Mortality and HIV Transmission: The ‘‘HIV Treatment as Prevention’’ Experience in a Canadian Setting. PLoS ONE 9(2): e87872.
Montaner, J. S., Lima, V. D., Barrios, R., Yip, B., Wood, E., Kerr, T., Shannon, K., Harrigan, P. R., Hogg, R. S., Daly, P., & Kendall, P. (2010). Association of highly active antiretroviral therapy coverage, population viral load, and yearly new HIV diagnoses in British Columbia, Canada: a population-based study. The Lancet, 376(9740), 532–539.
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