Windsor-Essex Pushes for Its Own Ontario Health Team

Windsor-Essex wants its own Ontario Health Team.

Back in February, as part of health care restructuring, the province announced it was going to phase out the Local Health Integration Networks and establish local Ontario Health Teams.

The OHTs would be fiscally responsible for health care services and providers.

At Essex County Council this week, the county has submitted an application to the Ministry of Health that Windsor-Essex should have a stand alone OHT, not one included with other regions like London.

The application included the support from 40 local agencies that have signed on including all three hospitals, Essex Windsor EMS, the health unit, CMHA,  

"We don't know what the ultimate structure will be for these health teams but we think very strongly that Windsor-Essex should be one," says Essex County CAO Rob Maisonville.

He says this is about the area coming up with its own solution.

"They [the province] have indicated from the submission that if you do make a submission and if you are not selected,  they will still provide you with support as to what did we miss, so better to be on the inside and create our own solution than have a solution for us."

Council heard it is expected there will be 30-50 OHTs, serving a population of 50,000 to 300,000.

Windsor-Essex has about 400,000 people.

Maisonville expects to hear more this summer about the creation of the Ontario Health Teams.

--With file from AM800's Teresinha Medeiros and Zander Broeckel