In the March 2019 edition of the CorHealth Quarterly, I wrote about the health system transformation that was announced by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (MOHLTC) in February 2019. Since the release of that newsletter, the MOHLTC has taken steps to transform Ontario’s health care system to be centred around patients, their families, and their caregivers.
The following highlights key activities from the last few months supporting the transformation.
Ontario Health Agency Board of Directors
The Ontario Health agency Board of Directors held its first official board meeting on Monday, March 11, 2019. The members of the Board of Directors for Ontario Health agency now also constitute the boards that oversee Cancer Care Ontario, eHealth Ontario, HealthForceOntario, Health Shared Services Ontario, Health Quality Ontario, Trillium Gift of Life Network and the Local Health Integration Networks (LHINs). It is my understanding that this Board has met a number of times as the Board of Ontario Health agency since the inaugural meeting and continues to play a critical role in ensuring the continuity of patient care throughout the transition process.
The People’s Health Care Act, 2019
On April 18, 2019, The People’s Health Care Act, 2019, was passed, which is a significant step towards putting the patient at the centre of care.
Interim CEO of Ontario Health Agency
It was announced on April 24, 2019, that Susan Fitzpatrick, former Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Toronto Central Local Health Integrated Network (LHIN), is the interim CEO of the Ontario Health agency. CorHealth Ontario has met with Susan to express our congratulations and to offer ongoing support for the transformation efforts.
In May 2019, CorHealth Ontario was informed of a budget reduction for 2019/20. To accommodate this reduction, the executive team and the finance committee of the Board of Directors has approved mitigation strategies, including not filling vacancies resulting from attrition and reducing infrastructure costs, such as IT and contracts while preserving the integrity of the important work CorHealth does. CorHealth is also very appreciative of the one-time funding approved by the MOHLTC for the bundled payment policy work and the Echocardiography Quality Improvement program.
Ontario Health Team Applications
Applicants from across the province submitted self-assessments to the MOHLTC on May 15, 2019, as the first requirement to becoming an Ontario Health Team candidate. The MOHLTC is reviewing the self-assessments and will be working with applicants throughout the summer. The first Ontario Health Team Candidates will be announced in fall 2019.
There is no further clarity about the timing of when CorHealth Ontario will be transitioned into Ontario Health agency. In the meantime, CorHealth Ontario continues to focus on driving evidence-informed practice; informing planning, access and resource allocation; and, measuring and reporting on quality outcomes to support the best cardiac, stroke, and vascular care for all Ontarians.
We will provide an update on this item in the next issue of CorHealth Quarterly, or if new information becomes available sooner, we will issue a Bulletin. In the meantime, please call me if you have any questions at 416-512-7472 ext. 222.