Ontario is improving care for people who have multiple or complex needs by establishing local Health Links. The current health care system can be challenging to navigate and patients are often asked for their information more than once. The vision for Health Links is to bring together supports from community, health and social services to develop ways of working together that improve the overall experience of their health care journey.
A core principle of the Health Link approach is to be patient-centred and ask the questions:
“How can we help you?” “What matters to you?”
Health Links are meant to make health care work better for residents, especially those who are vulnerable, who need a variety of different services, and who have multiple health care needs. Right now there is a need to build on all of the existing services, improve communication, reduce duplication, and ensure people are connected to the right programs and services. This can be accomplished through ensuring that residents have a Physician or Nurse Practitioner who works with them throughout their health care journey, and through involving the resident and their family in the creation of one personalized coordinated care plan.
The Health Links approach is successful when all providers in the community are committed to coming together and making changes that help people experience seamless care.
Check out the Health Links story video.
In Waterloo Wellington, we have four Health Links:
- Guelph (Lead Organization: Guelph Family Health Team)
- Rural Wellington (Lead Organization: Mount Forest Family Health Team)
- Cambridge and North Dumfries (Lead Organization: Langs Community Health Centre)
- Kitchener, Waterloo, Wellesley, Woolwich and Wilmot (Lead Organization: Centre for Family Medicine Family Health Team)
Our Health Links are taking an all-of-community approach, are led by primary care, and involve community providers and hospitals as well as community addictions and mental health services, municipal services, policing, housing supports, and more. All service providers have an active and vital role to play.
The WWLHIN is working with the Health Links to find ways to make lasting improvements to our residents’ health care experiences. At the same time, other parts of the local health system are also becoming more integrated and aligned.
To learn more about Health Links in Waterloo Wellington, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.