Improving Access To Care In The North



    
    Expansion At Northern Ontario School Of Medicine To Put More Medical
    Students In Small, Remote and Aboriginal Communities
    

    TORONTO, Aug. 22 /CNW/ -

    NEWS

    People in the North will have better access to care with a new investment
that will allow more medical students to train in northern communities.
    The Ontario government is expanding in-the-field training at the Northern
Ontario School of Medicine (http://www.normed.ca/). The Northern Ontario
Heritage Fund is providing $3.3 million to expand local medical centres and
improve internet connections in 77 communities over the next three years. This
will allow medical students to see patients in small, rural and Aboriginal
communities, while staying in close contact with their teachers by using
videoconferencing and distance learning.
    The Northern Ontario School of Medicine was the first new medical school
to open in Ontario in 30 years. It focuses on the unique medical needs of
people in rural and northern Ontario.

    QUOTES

    "By training medical students in the North, we're helping to ensure that
more doctors will work in the North. With these improvements, northern
communities will benefit right away from the dedication and expertise of these
medical students," said Premier McGuinty.
    "This investment will help the Northern Ontario School of Medicine
deliver more effectively on its mandate to improve the health and well being
of northerners," said Northern Development and Mines Minister Michael
Gravelle, who also chairs the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation.
    "The Northern Ontario School of Medicine is making a real difference in
improving access to care in North -- and this investment will further improve
access to care for families throughout the North. Better access means less
travelling and being able to see doctors with more specialized training," said
MPP for Thunder Bay-Atikokan Bill Mauro.

    QUICK FACTS

    
    -   Since October 2003, the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund has funded
        more than 1,800 projects in Northern Ontario worth over $364 million.

    -   The Northern Ontario School of Medicine has two main campuses -- one
        at Lakehead University in Thunder Bay and another at Laurentian
        University in Sudbury.

    -   About 56 students are entering their final year. They're on track to
        be the first graduating class of the Northern Ontario School of
        Medicine in 2009.
    

    LEARN MORE

    Read about the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund
(http://www.mndm.gov.on.ca/NOHFC/default_e.asp) and how it's improving the
quality of life in the North.
    Do you have questions about your health? Try calling Telehealth Ontario
(http://www.health.gov.on.ca/english/public/program/telehealth/telehealth_mn.h
tml).

    
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