The Ontario government announced Thursday that the Frontenac, Lennox and Addington (FLA) Ontario Health Team (OHT) is one of 13 new teams approved to bring together health service providers to ensure people have access to the variety of care and supports they need, when and where they need them.
“This is a great opportunity to come together as one team to make meaningful change for people, their caregivers, and health service providers,” said Kerry Stewart, a member of the FLA OHT application advisory committee. “I see us collaborating with each other to build a really vibrant system of care in this region that is easy for people to get into, and easy for them to navigate through.”
A wide range of close to 60 partners have committed to build a health system that works together to help people in the FLA region achieve their optimal health and wellbeing. Among the partners are family health practices, home and community care, mental health and addiction services, long-term care, patients, caregivers, hospitals, public health, community support services and municipalities.
“Our response to COVID-19 has demonstrated how effectively we can work together; and now with our local health team we will further strengthen existing relationships and work to break down the silos that make it difficult for patients to receive the right care and supports in a timely manner,” says Lennox and Addington County General Hospital chief of staff Dr. Kim Morrison, who, along with Dr. David Pichora, co-led the application advisory committee.
Forty-two OHTs have been introduced since late 2019 throughout Ontario. Each team has been tasked with finding new ways of organizing and delivering care to meet the unique needs of people in specific communities.
Over the next year, the FLA OHT will be working on how to connect residents to a home of primary care and allied health providers working as one team to coordinate care, a Health Home. A Health Neighbourhood, a network of additional health and social supports and services, will be organized around people in their Health Homes to ensure timely access to care.
“Our goal is for people to have the majority of their care coordinated and delivered by their Health Homes, including helping people navigate and transition to the care provided in the Health Neighbourhood,” says Dr. Morrison. “When the Health Homes are working well for people, we may be able to delay or decrease their need for services such as long-term care and hospital-based care.”
For more information about the Frontenac, Lennox and Addington Ontario Health Team, visit www.flaoht.ca.
The Ontario Health Team model is part of Bill 74, The People’s Health Care Act, which includes the creation of Ontario Health, the agency that will consolidate the 14 Local Health Integration Networks and other province-wide agencies, such as Cancer Care Ontario, Health Quality Ontario and eHealth Ontario.
“I’m very pleased to see this official launch of the Ontario Health Team for Frontenac and Lennox and Addington,” said Hastings-Lennox and Addington MPP Daryl Kramp. “A lot of skilled and dedicated local medical people, including health advocates and administrators across the counties, have put a lot of work into this for many months and we can all be very thankful to them for going the extra mile even as they have been fighting flat-out against COVID-19.”