What is an Ontario Health Team (OHT)?
The OHT’s are the provincial government’s latest initiative (essentially replacing the previous Local Health Integration Networks, or LHIN’s) being set up to “to provide a new way of organizing and delivering care that is more connected to patients in their local communities”.
What has the AHHC done?
The committee for the Almaguin Highlands Health Centre began pulling together an OHT application in the Fall of 2019. The OHT application has been submitted and the current status is listed as "in discovery". We have also met with applicants from surrounding areas (Muskoka, West Parry Sound and Near North (Nipissing/North Bay) to ensure our area is represented. As of March 2020, services for the Almaguin Highlands area are not covered as part of any of the other OHT applications. For this reason, AHHC will continue to develop its bid and push for recognition as a separate Ontario Health Team to support our residents.
Why have we applied to be an OHT?
The Almaguin Highlands region continues to be under-serviced from a healthcare perspective. Most services were cut back in 2009 due to budget restraints at the Muskoka Algonquin Healthcare (MAHC), and from that point the region has essentially been on its own. We have a unique set of requirements and constraints and we need to ensure that our residents receive the healthcare services they deserve, just like any other citizen in the province.
What is the current status of our OHT application?
As of March 2020, our application remains in the "in discovery" status. This effectively means that we have not moved forward as of yet. Our goal is to provide the Ministry of Health with further information and to have our application moved to an "in development" status.