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Health Transformation

The Ontario government is in the midst of a health system transformation. It has three key priorities for health care reform: keeping Ontarians healthy, reducing wait times, and providing better access to doctors and nurses.

A wait times strategy is in place to reduce wait times for cardiac care, cancer care, diagnostic imaging procedures, joint replacements,  sight restoration and emergency rooms.

Primary care reform is changing the way family physicians work so that more people have access to doctors and nurses. In addition, the government’s health human resource strategy has a variety of initiatives to increase the number of doctors and nurses available.

The plan to keep Ontarians healthy has involved the development of a chronic disease prevention and management framework and a diabetes strategy, Other health care reforms include system-wide changes in public health, long-term care, home care, and the drug program, as well as new legislation to support reforms.

A major goal of this government’s “transformation agenda” for health has been to make the health system more accountable for health outcomes. A new approach to accountability is being taken, which will involve health service providers entering into funding agreements based on what health outcomes they will achieve. A newly created Ontario Health Quality Council is responsible for monitoring how well the health system as a whole is achieving expected outcomes.

The Excellent Care for All Act, 2010 (ECFFA _ Bill 46) was passed on June 8th, 2010.  This establishes requirements for health care organizations, starting first with hospitals then into the community sector.  This has initiated a focus on quality improvement in the health sector.

The government believes that better outcomes can be achieved through a more integrated health system. To this end, the day-to-day management of the health system has been devolved from the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care to 14  Local Health Integration Networks (LHINs). LHINS are responsible for the funding and monitoring of the health system in their geographic area. By bringing planning and funding down to a more local level, the goal is to make the health system more accessible, easier to navigate, and more responsive to the needs of the people who live in the LHIN areas.

Improved integration of health care and improved accountability for outcomes requires good quality data and effective information-sharing among all parts of the health system, CMHA  Ontario is monitoring these changes in the health care system and their impact on people with mental illness and the mental health system. As the health care system changes, we are committed to working to ensure that changes are in the best interest of the mental health of Ontarians. We have made submissions to the government on many issues related to health care reform.

Related Documents

Local Health Integration Networks

E-Health

Primary Health Care

Related Resources

Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care

Health Quality Ontario