What is a Family  Health Team?

Family Health Teams are a key piece of the provincial government’s plan to build a health care system that promotes good health, reduces wait times and improves access to care. In Family Health Teams, family doctors work with other health care professionals such as nurse practitioners, nurses, mental health counsellors, dietitians and pharmacists to see more patients and to keep them healthy.

Family Health Teams are an important part of changing both the health care system and the way people think about health care. Family Health Teams will focus more on preventing illness and promoting health. They will look at the best ways to manage chronic illnesses such as high blood pressure, diabetes and depression. Family Health Teams will provide care that is more accessible and comprehensive. They will give patients the opportunity to be more involved in making decisions about their own health.

Since April, 2005, the Ontario government has approved 200 Family Health Teams across the province. The Hamilton Family Health Team is the largest, serving approximately 280,000 people and was built on the “platform” of the H-W HSO Mental Health and Nutrition Programme.

What is Quality Improvement (QI)?

Quality Improvement (QI) in primary care is a proactive approach to all aspects of patient care that improves operational and clinical processes resulting in improved outcomes for individuals.  QI focuses on system performance and the development of best practices to provide care that is more patient-centred, more timely and more focused on populations.

What is Open Access?

It has been shown that doctors who book patient appointments too far into the future run the risk of scheduling backlogs.  This results in patients having difficulty getting in to see their doctor in a timely way.  To avoid this, your doctor has a new system.

When you call for an appointment, you can expect to be seen within the week (whether it is a medical review, an annual check up, or something more urgent).  Please plan the timing of your phone call accordingly.

For this to work, we need your trust and cooperation as we sincerely believe it will allow us to serve you better.  We have saved some time slots for the more traditional booking method which will still apply under some circumstances, but we will always be striving not to get too far ahead of ourselves!

Where possible:

Try to: call later in the day for an appointment the following day.

Avoid: calling on Monday unless you want to be seen on Monday as it is our busiest phone time.  Also, avoid walking in and expecting to be seen – we need time to prepare for each appointment.

Thanks for helping us with our quality improvement efforts!

What is a Periodic Health Review?

Did you know that you may not need that annual physical?  Doctors know that the most important interventions done at your physical are screening tests and immunizations.  If you are up to date with these, an annual physical may not be required.  Our office can help you determine if you are up to date and if required, a member of our team can see you for a Periodic Health Review to review this important health information with you.

What if I need to see a doctor but the office is closed?

Click here for our after hours information.

What is the role of a physician’s assistant (PA)?

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