Care Connections - Partnering for Healthy Communities
On June 20, 2011 over 320 people came together at Casino Rama Conference Centre to hear progress updates on each area of focus, share experiences that demonstrated collaboration, and provide input to support the coordinating councils and project steering committees, as they move forward with implementation.
Myrna Watson, Elder with the Chippewas of Rama First Nation brought greetings on behalf of Chief Sharon Stinson Henry who was unable to attend, and then led the attendees in a prayer to begin the day.
NSM LHIN CEO Bernie Blais noted in his opening remarks that "this opportunity makes me even more excited to be part of a very large team of people working together to make significant changes to the way people get better health care and improved health status. I love my job as a LHIN CEO…YES, I did say I love my job as a LHIN CEO for the very fact that through what we are doing today, this gathering, we have the opportunity to affect the lives of thousands of people. What more noble cause is there in life? "
A panel comprised of NSM LHIN health service providers involved in the areas of focus coordinating councils, was moderated by Sean O'Shea, Investigative Reporter with Global Television. Sean posed questions to the panel and audience members were encouraged to share their experiences or present the panel with their own questions.
The panel discussion preceded the morning breakout sessions, that were designed to solicit input on the implementation of the initial three-years areas of focus:
- Complex and Chronic Needs
- In-Home and Community Capacity
- Maternal Child Health
- Medicine Program
- Mental Health and Addictions
- Surgery Program
- System Enablers (Information and Communications Technology / eHealth; Health Human Resources; System Navigation; and, Transportation)
The breakout sessions were repeated in the afternoon to allow attendees an opportunity to participate in a different breakout session than the one they attended in the morning. The chairs of each breakout session reported back to the plenary on the outcomes that were achieved during the sessions.
As part of the proceedings for the day, the NSM Home First initiative was launched. Home First is a philosophy that will assist people get the right care, at the right time, in the right place, at the right cost. It was designed to identify and support high needs seniors who could safely wait at home for an alternate care setting, rather than in hospital. "In Ontario, it is estimated that 37 per cent of people in long-term care homes don’t need to be there. With some additional supports, seniors could live in their own homes and be cared for with appropriate support," noted NSM LHIN CEO Bernie Blais.
Home First is a partnership between Ontario’s fourteen LHINs, CCACs, hospitals, long-term care homes and community support services providers. The LHIN believes this partnership will help make Home First a success in North Simcoe Muskoka. As part of the launch, the NSM LHIN Home First steering committee was pleased to premiere their client-focused video at the forum.
Giving seniors back some control over their care and their lives, in a setting that is safe and familiar to them, not only benefits our residents, but helps address the Alternate Level of Care issue - "an issue that is not going to improve unless we take the steps to be revolutionary in developing local and provincial solutions."
Farewell to Ruben Rosen
At the end of the day NSM LHIN current and past board members, staff and attendees thanked outgoing NSM LHIN Chair Ruben Rosen with a recognition ceremony and celebration. Anne Gagné, NSM LHIN Board Vice-Chair hosted the ceremony.
Mary Silk, on behalf of Garfield Dunlop, MPP Simcoe North presented Ruben with a certificate of recognition for his role in health care . The wording from the certificate stated:
As your Member of Parliament of Ontario for Simcoe North, may I take this opportunity to extend to you my sincere congratulations as you celebrate the time you spent as the inaugural Chair for the North Simcoe Muskoka Local Health Integration Network.
It is my privilege and honour to commend you for the dedication, commitment and direction you have provided to the LHIN. Your enthusiasm, vision, dedication, willingness to participate in events and your kind pleasant nature has been an asset to your position.
Congratulations as you embark on a new journey in your life and best wishes for all your future endeavours.
Garfield Dunlop, MPP Simcoe North
NSM LHIN CEO Bernie Blais spoke, along with Jean Trimnell, former NSM LHIN CEO. Ruben thanked everyone and spoke about his role as the LHIN Chair from the early days in 2005 to today.
Notes, presentations, videos and evaluation survey results will be posted on the LHIN website shortly. To view a montage of the photos that were taken, please click here.
We are now going to spend from June 2011 to end of May 2012 implementing the agreed upon areas of focus. On May 30, 2012, we're coming back together at Casino Rama Conference Centre to discuss the first year progress and evaluation and strategize how to continue implementing a health system design that is unique to not only Ontario, but many areas of the country. Mark your calendar!