Primary Care

About Primary Care

Primary care is the first point of contact a person has with the health care system – the point where people receive care for most of their everyday health needs. Primary care is also the principal point of continuing care for patients within the health care system, and coordinates other specialist care as needed.

Primary care providers, including family doctors, nurse practitioners and nurses, work in both individual and group practices such as community health centres, family health teams, family health networks, family health groups, family health organizations, nursing stations and nurse practitioner led clinics.

In February 2012, and with endorsement from the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, Primary Care Leads were introduced in each of the 14 LHINs to strengthen and further integrate primary care into health planning. As the HNHB LHIN’s Primary Care Lead and as VP Clinical, Dr. Jennifer Everson works to ensure primary care services are better integrated with other health care sectors, and works with health service providers to improve access to quality care.

Primary Care Network

In 2010, the HNHB LHIN Primary Care Network was formed. It is headed by the LHIN Primary Care Lead and made up of hospital Chiefs of Family Medicine, Health Link Physician Leads, and representatives from academic institutions, the Ontario College of Family Physicians, and the Ontario Medical Association.

The Primary Care Network provides advice to the LHIN on local change strategies, sharing best practices, and shaping and coordinating various strategies for primary care.

Initiatives that the Primary Care Network has advised the LHIN on include the Discharge Bundle, Community COPD Program, Lung Diagnostic Assessment Program (LDAP), Esophageal Diagnostic Assessment Program (EDAP), Retinal Screening Program, Palliative Care, Tapestry 9, and Diabetes.

Health Care Connect – Helping you find a family doctor or nurse practitioner

Health Care Connect helps Ontarians who are without a family health care provider (family doctor or nurse practitioner) to find one. People without a family health care provider are referred to a family doctor or a nurse practitioner who is accepting new patients in their community.

Find out more about the program.

You can sign up for Health Care Connect if you do not already have a family doctor. If you already have family doctor and want to change, please see the Frequently Asked Questions for more information.