Government of Ontario and Central LHIN
York Region, Ontario, CANADA

The diverse communities of Markham and Richmond Hill urgently need access to the integrated model of community-based health care offered by Ontario's Community Health Centres (CHCs).

CHCs are the only primary health care services in Ontario that bring together family physicians, nurses and other health professionals under a single roof to provide team-based care, combined with a wide range of other health promotion and community development services. This comprehensive approach is exactly what is required in Markham and Richmond Hill where there are so many different populations with complex needs -- especially the thousands of newcomers to Canada whose health is often at risk because of factors beyond their control.

Inter-professional health teams providing services from a new Community Health Centre based in Markham would respond to the individual health issues faced by members of these communities. The CHC would also create programs and services that address the wider range of non-medical factors -- the "social determinants of health" -- that are negatively impacting community wellbeing. All of these services would be culturally-appropriate and carefully tailored to respond to the diverse needs of the many different communities living in Markham and Richmond Hill. Other benefits of the new Community Health Centre will include:

* Increasing access to primary health care for those who do not currently have a primary care provider;

* Empowering patients to take charge of their own health through health education, health promotion and disease prevention programs;

* Reducing visits to local hospital Emergency Rooms and reducing costly and avoidable hospital admissions by providing timely access to preventive health care;

In other parts of the GTA, residents are already benefiting from Community Health Centres that deliver integrated and seamless health and social services to a wide range of populations with complex needs. People living in Markham and Richmond Hill, with similar complex needs, deserve access to the same integrated, high-quality services.

For more information read our short background document.

Learn more about Ontario's Community Health Centres at www.ontariochc.ca

We call on the Government of Ontario to commit to investing in a new Community Health Centre (CHC) to serve the residents of Markham and Richmond Hill, and to allocate funds to the Central LHIN in the next provincial budget so that implementation of this CHC can begin.

We call on the Central LHIN to begin working with Social Services Network and community members from Markham and Richmond Hill in planning for implementation of the new Community Health Centre in Markham.

GoPetition respects your privacy.

The Create a Community Health Centre for Markham and Richmond Hill petition to Government of Ontario and Central LHIN was written by SSN Communications and is in the category Health at GoPetition.