Welcome Back – Chair's Message

It is definitely hard not to think about anything else but the COVID-19 pandemic these days. If nothing else this pandemic has highlighted, more than ever, the importance of family medicine and primary care to our healthcare system.

This key role of primary care has been recognized by our provincial government because they have set primary care engagement as a key component of Ontario health team applications. Applications for Ontario Health Teams that do not feature primary care engagement have not been successful.

In the London Middlesex region the London Middlesex Primary Care Alliance has been the vehicle representing primary care in our Ontario Health Team application. The Alliance has been doing this work so far on behalf of all primary care without the formal documented support of all the teams, clinics, groups, practices and organizations that constitute primary care. Establishing governance for such a diverse group is a challenge but nevertheless so important.  

The Primary Care Alliance is now reaching out to all of primary care to seek agreement on a vision and mission, (currently draft), which all primary care providers can look to for strategic guidance.

Vision: An inclusive network of primary care providers leading with a unified voice to improve the health of our community.

Mission: To create a strong and unified primary care network to:

  • Lead system change utilizing quintuple AIM values
  • Drive health equity and continuous quality improvement for the best possible experience and health outcomes
  • Advance patient-centred equitable care in partnership with those we serve
  • Improve integration of primary health services with public health and other social and health care partners.

I urge all family physicians and primary care practitioners to get behind the Primary Care Alliance and the strong message that is carried within this Vision and Mission. It is time that all of primary care was united in our role as the foundation of the health care system. With the acceptance of this message we can be assured that primary care will be strongly represented at the Western Ontario Health Team level and will be leaders in system change.

As always I welcome your comments at swetmore@uwo.ca and @DOCSJW.