WWLHIN Board Highlights

KITCHENER, ON, February 6, 2015 – The Waterloo Wellington Local Health Integration Network’s (WWLHIN) Board of Directors held their regular meeting on January 29, 2015. Below are highlights from the meeting. For the full agenda and briefing notes, please visit www.wwlhin.on.ca.

Increasing Access to Primary Care by Investing in Community Health Centres

Community Health Centres are non-profit organizations that provide primary health and health promotion programs for individuals, families and communities. The WWLHIN Board of Directors approved base funding of up to $100,000 each for Kitchener Downtown Community Health Centre, Woolwich Community Health Centre, Guelph Community Health Centre and Langs Community Health Centre to improve access to primary care. The 4 CHCs will collaborate to increase the number of people who can access their services. They will also work closely with addictions and mental health providers and the Waterloo Wellington Community Care Access Centre to better connect residents with community care, reducing the need for them to see their primary care provider and allowing for additional residents to be served. Over 90% of residents have access to a primary care provider. In the last few years, more than 20,000 more local residents have been connected with a primary care provider.

Health System Annual Plan Progress Report

Elliot Fung, Senior Manager, Health System Integration presented the third quarterly report on the implementation of the 2014-2015 Annual Business Plan to achieve the objectives outlined in the Better Health, Better Futures Integrated Health Service Plan (IHSP). A few accomplishments are highlighted below:

Specialized Adult Day Services Expansion: Expansion of the Community Alzheimer Program has strengthened and improved the delivery of day services in the WWLHIN. There are more spaces available in specialized day programs which means that more residents are benefiting from having the care they need while they age in place. Currently, there are more than 1550 older adults attending day programs in Waterloo Wellington, giving their caregivers a much deserved break. These programs have the potential to decrease hospitalizations and readmissions for conditions that can be effectively managed in the community.

Integrated Clinical Programs: The implementation and operation of a suite of Integrated Clinical Programs (ICP) continues to proceed, and during the past three months gains have been made in building consistencies in planning and reporting across each of the ICPs. Currently, eleven ICPs have CEO sponsored Councils, with Diagnostic Imagining being the latest to form. In 2015, an ICP for children’s health is planned, and the cancer and renal council will align closely with the WWLHIN ICP approach. 

Integrated Programs are collections of related health care services that offer a consistent high standard of quality and access based on leading practice.

Improving Emergency Department Care: Improvements have been made in emergency department length of stay performance throughout 2014 in Waterloo Wellington. Four local hospitals – Guelph General Hospital, St Mary’s General Hospital, Grand River Hospital and Cambridge Memorial Hospital - participate in the provincial ER Pay for Results program and they are projected to earn, collectively, over $5.6 million in 2015/16 (which is over $500,000 more than in 2014/15) should program funding remain constant. These resources will be used to fund initiatives that support and improve patient flow and reduce wait times. This means that residents who go to the emergency department are waiting less time for care, being admitted to a hospital bed faster if needed, and leaving the hospital faster for uncomplicated conditions.

Risk Performance Management Framework

Zeynep Danis, Senior Director, Finance and Corporate Support and Stacey Rous, Director, Performance and Accountability, presented the WWLHIN Risk and Performance Management Framework which identifies and manages system and corporate risks through various reporting tools and reports. You can learn more here.

2015-16 Hospital Service Accountability Agreement (H-SAA)

The WWLHIN Board of Directors received an update from the Senior Manager, Performance and Accountability, Mladen Samac on the work being done to have the 2015-16 H-SAA agreements in place as of April 1, 2015. The Hospital Service Accountability Agreement or H-SAA is a contract between the WWLHIN and each hospital as stipulated by the Local Health System Integration Act (LHSIA). This agreement sets the terms by which Hospitals will provide health services to residents using the funding allocation provided by the WWLHIN. Approximately $600 million is allocated to hospitals in our region on an annual basis.

French Language Health Planning Entity Hamilton Niagara Haldimand Brant/Waterloo Wellington

The WWLHIN Board of Directors received a presentation about French Language Services planning and service provision in Waterloo Wellington including the role of the French Language Health Planning Entity. The WWLHIN has been very pro-active in taking all opportunities to integrate French services within existing programs as well as conducting extensive consultations with the French-speaking community. In response to the priorities set by the community, the WWLHIN has been successful in:

  • Supporting the establishment of a bilingual family health team in the region 
  • Identifying a mental health agency to develop and offer mental health services to the French-speaking community via telemedicine. Two other LHINs now also participate  in this project to better serve their communities
  • Ongoing support of the development of French services at the WWCCAC (Since January 1, 2012, according to the CCACs Incorporation Act, all CCACs in Ontario are obligated to offer services in French) 
  • Working in partnership with the Ministry of Children and Youth Services to support the implementation of mental health services in all seven French schools in Waterloo Wellington 
  • Holding three French Health Forums to educate the French-speaking community about the health care system in Waterloo Wellington and to assist them in using the system

Special Needs Strategy for Children and Youth

Toni Lemon, Chief Strategy Officer, gave an update on the planning tables for children and youth with special needs including potential impacts on the local health system. In February 2014, the ministries of Children and Youth Services, Community and Social Services, Education and Health and Long-Term Care launched a provincial strategy to improve services for children and youth with special needs in Ontario. In Waterloo Wellington, there are 3 planning tables: Waterloo Region, Wellington-Dufferin, and Grey-Bruce. The WWLHIN is serving a key role at these tables, working together to integrate the specialized care and support children and their families need.

Next Board Meeting

The next WWLHIN Board meeting will be held on Thursday, March 26, 2015.

For more information, please contact:

Local: 519-650-4472
Toll-Free: 1-866-306-LHIN (5446)