North West LHIN’s health system planning and funding functions are now part of Ontario Health, a government agency responsible for ensuring Ontarians continue to receive high-quality health care services where and when they need them.
North West Health Links
About Health Links
In December 2012, The Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (MOHLTC) launched integrated regional patient care networks called “Health Links”, placing primary care providers at the centre of the system to help remove barriers to care.
The North West has five Health Links corresponding to the five sub-regions . The sub-regions were initially defined as Integrated District Networks (IDNs) as illustrated in the 2012 North West Health Services Blueprint.
What is the Health Link Approach to Care?
The goal of the Health Links approach to care is to create seamless care coordination for patients with complex needs, by ensuring each patient has a Coordinated Care Plan (CCP) and ongoing care coordination.
When the family doctor or nurse practitioner, community organizations, specialists, the hospital, the long-term care home and other providers work as a team; patients with multiple, complex conditions receive better, more coordinated care. Working together, providers design individualized Care Plans with patients and their families to ensure they are supported in reaching their goals and receiving the support and care they need.
Through the Health Links approach to care, patients are better able to achieve health goals, can better manage their own care, and have fewer hospital visits; increasing their overall health and well-being.
Health Links Brochures
Health Links Patient Brochure
Health Links Provider Brochure
Who may benefit from Health Link Approach to Care?
Patients with the greatest health care needs make up five percent of Ontario’s population but use services that account for approximately two-thirds of Ontario’s health care dollars. Better coordination of care will result in better care for these patients and significant health system savings that can be devoted to other patients; ultimately improving the sustainability of public health care.
People with complex care needs see a substantial number of providers for support. We know how hard it is to arrange and travel to appointments, or keep all of the information straight. Coordinated Care Planning brings the full care team together to develop a care plan for the person, based on unique needs and goals. It’s a new way of doing things that improves a person’s wellbeing and helps make our health care system more efficient.
The Health Links approach to care coordination is a model where all providers in a community; including family care providers, specialists, hospitals, long-term care, home care and other community supports, work together to coordinate plans for patients with complex needs. This will help improve patient transitions within the system and help ensure patients receive more responsive care that addresses their specific needs, with the support of a tightly knit team of providers.