Health Associations Show Leadership with Ideas to Bend the Health Care Cost

TORONTO, March 25 /CNW/ - The importance of bending the cost curve for Ontario's health care sector has long been top of mind for health system leaders. After all, improving the quality and efficiency of patient care can lead to better value-for-money for taxpayers.

That is why Ontario's leading health care associations developed "Ideas and Opportunities for Bending the Health Care Cost Curve: Advice for the Government of Ontario."

To be released in April 2010, this paper presents essential, practical strategies that can be implemented to make Ontario's health care system better and more sustainable. While the recommendations presented in the paper are by no means exhaustive, they present rich opportunities that, if fully implemented, could have dramatic and significant cost savings for Ontario's health care system.

Developed by the Ontario Association of Community Care Access Centres (OACCAC), the Ontario Federation of Community Mental Health and Addiction Programs (OFCMHAP) and the Ontario Hospital Association (OHA), this paper shows how focusing on a few key strategies, rather than quick fixes, can position Ontario to meet the health care demands of its citizens in the years to come.

Specifically, the paper recommends:

    -   Implementing leadership and strategies needed to better manage costly
        chronic illness;
    -   Immediately adopting results-oriented leading practices; -
        Appropriate shifting of services and funding from hospitals to the
        community health care providers;
    -   Managing expenditures related to physician services and
        pharmaceuticals more effectively; and,
    -   Proceeding with targeted human resources initiatives.

Given the Government of Ontario's stated commitment in the 2010 Speech From The Throne to pursue "a path of constant reform" to ensure the viability of Ontario's health care, this paper is a clear, timely contribution to the current debate about how to strengthen Ontario's health care system.

Key Quotes:

"Our three organizations developed this report together because we understand the importance of bending the health sector cost curve, particularly at a time when the Government of Ontario is facing a $21.3 billion deficit," said OHA President and CEO Tom Closson.

"We have demonstrated that by working together, we can make a difference and get results that matter for a high quality, affordable health care system. In the 2010 Speech from the Throne, the Government of Ontario showed alignment with the goals of our organizations' previous collaborative efforts by indicating their intention to address patient-based funding and health care capacity in the Open Ontario Plan. We hope we can continue to build on this successful track record," said Margaret Mottershead, CEO of the Ontario Association for Community Care Access Centres.

"Coming together to address health costs is a giant step forward in ensuring a continuum of care that is available to all Ontarians. Doing so ensures that the expertise of people on the front line of service delivery has an impact on the care and the outcomes of our health system," said OFCMHAP Executive Director David Kelly.

About the OHA:

The Ontario Hospital Association (OHA) is the voice of Ontario's public hospitals. Founded in 1924, the OHA uses advocacy, education and partnerships to build a strong, innovative and sustainable health care system for all Ontarians.

About the OACCAC:

The Ontario Association of Community Care Access Centres (OACCACs) is the voice of the CCAC sector, a key player within a sustainable integrated health care system. The OACCAC fosters strategic alliances within the health care system while continuously delivering high quality shared services to members and health care partners.

About the OFCMHAP:

The federation brings together community mental health and addiction services in the province of Ontario to help members provide effective, high-quality services through information sharing, education, advocacy and unified effort.

SOURCE Ontario Hospital Association

For further information: For further information: Media contact: Amy Ouellette, OHA Public Affairs, (416) 205-1433,

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