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HPPH offers masks to residents at high risk for respiratory problems when air quality poor

Huron Perth, ON – Huron Perth Public Health (HPPH) is offering N95 respirators to residents who are at high risk for respiratory problems when wildfire smoke results in poor air quality. The N95 respirators and other high quality masks are being provided to public health units by the Government of Ontario.

Those at greatest risk of experiencing negative health effects from poor air quality are people with lung disease (such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) or heart disease, older adults, children, pregnant people, and people who work outdoors.

Huron Perth residents at higher risk will be able to come to HPPH to pick up two respirators per person while supplies last. The respirators will be available during regular business hours, (Monday to Friday, 8:30am-4:30pm) at:

  • HPPH Clinton site | 77722B London Road, Clinton
  • HPPH West Gore site | 653 West Gore Street, Stratford

Some municipal offices, including the City of Stratford and Town of Goderich, may also offer masks.

Many regions, including Huron Perth, recently experienced several days with poor air quality as result of wildfire smoke coming from northeastern Ontario and Quebec. Although air quality has improved locally, the situation could worsen again.

The higher the air quality health index (AQHI), the greater the health risk and the need to take precautions. It is recommended that high risk populations try to stay indoors as much as possible when air quality is poor, especially if experiencing symptoms. If you need to go outside, a well-fitted respirator type mask, such as an N95, can help reduce your health risk. However, masks may not fully protect you from poor air quality. Residents at higher risk may consider wearing a respirator type mask when AQHI is ≥7 (high or very high).

Environment Canada and the Province of Ontario monitor air quality. They provide current and forecasted AQHI values and related information on health risks at and While there are no air quality monitoring stations in Huron or Perth, residents can check the results for Grand Bend, Kitchener-Waterloo, and London to see general air quality trends for our region. In addition, individuals can subscribe to receive weather and air quality alerts from Environment Canada at

By visiting or, residents can also find information on recommended actions they can take to reduce their exposure to air pollution and protect their health.

Some ways that people can lower the risk of respiratory problems from poor air quality include:

  • Monitoring for symptoms such as coughing, throat irritation, shortness of breath, dizziness or chest pain
  • Staying indoors when the AQHI is 7 or greater (high risk) and reducing or stopping strenuous outdoor activities
  • Checking on people in your care and those around you who may be more susceptible to air pollution
  • Going to a location in your community where you can find clean, cool air, such as the library or community centre
  • Drinking plenty of water
  • Reducing infiltration of outdoor air pollutants into your home. Health Canada suggests:
    • Keeping windows and doors closed, and using air conditioning, or fans.
    • Properly sealing windows and doors with weather stripping.
    • Setting your ventilation system to recirculate when the outdoor air is poor and bring in fresh air when the outdoor air has improved.
    • Installing a high-quality high-efficiency particulate air filter.

Contact Us

Huron Perth Public Health

Huron Office
77722B London Road, RR #5, Clinton, ON
N0M 1L0

Perth Office
653 West Gore St., Stratford ON N5A 1L4
Toll-free 1-888-221-2133

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