Mississauga Halton LHIN Takes On Increased Responsibility of Local Health System to Improve Care for Ontarians

    A Milestone for Ontario's Health Care System

    OAKVILLE, ON, March 30 /CNW/ - The Mississauga Halton Local Health
Integration Network (LHIN) today celebrated an important milestone in its
history. First announced by the government in 2004, LHINs will now assume the
additional responsibility for allocating funds to improve health services,
reduce wait times and ensure better coordination between health providers.
Effective April 1, LHINs wil assume their full responsibilities to plan,
coordinate, integrate, fund and monitor local health services.
    "The Mississauga Halton LHIN has grown from a fledgling start-up
organization to a strong Local Health Integration Network ready, willing and
able to assume its full responsibilities," said John Magill, Chair of the
Mississauga Halton LHIN.
    LHINs will oversee two-thirds of Ontario's health care budget - nearly
$20 billion a year and, working closely with citizens and health care
partners, will determine the health care priorities and services required in
their local communities.
    "Our government is standing by its commitment to build a health care
system around the needs of our communities and local patients," said Health
and Long-Term Care Minister George Smitherman. "LHINs will make it easier for
patients to access the different health services they need and to find their
way through a complex health system. LHINs will break down the barriers that
patients face and ensure that local health care decisions are made with
patients' needs in mind."
    LHINs will fund and coordinate services between hospitals, long-term care
homes, Community Care Access Centres (CCACs), community support service
agencies, mental health and addiction agencies, divested psychiatric hospitals
and Community Health Centres (CHCs). The ministry retains responsibility for
overall planning of the health system and a number of provincial programs
including health human resources and public health.
    Building on the strengths of local health organizations, LHINs allow for
better matching of health care resources to community needs.
    As a result of assuming our full responsibilities, patients in the
Mississauga Halton LHIN can expect to see a real improvement in health care.
Specifically patients will:

    -  Benefit from different health providers working together to care for
    -  Experience fewer delays and disruptions, and shorter wait times in
       their health care services
    -  Receive better, safer care from the health professionals that are best
       suited to provide that care
    -  Receive better information about health services in their community,
       and have the ability to compare their wait times with other LHINs
    -  Experience a health system that works better because there is less
       waste and duplication.

    "LHINs are changing the way our health care system is managed," said
Smitherman. "They will, for the first time, engage local residents in the
planning and delivering of health care, to create even better access to
quality care and reduce wait times."
    "I'm very proud to be a part of this process. I think it's one that
people are going to be able to look back on in years to come and say "Yeah,
they got it right - And patients are better for it," said Magill, Chair of the
Mississauga Halton LHIN.

For further information:

For further information: John Magill, Chair, Mississauga Halton Local
Health Integration Network, (905) 337-7131 ext 207,

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