Conference

2017 Conference Themes

Improving Primary Care Together

The AFHTO 2017 Conference program will be built around 7 core themes.

  1. Effective leadership and governance for system transformation
  2. Planning programs for equitable access to care
  3. Employing and empowering the patient and caregiver perspective
  4. Strengthening partnerships
  5. Optimizing use of resources
  6. Using data to demonstrate value and improve quality of care
  7. Clinical innovations for specific populations

Concurrent Theme Descriptions

Download a printable PDF of the theme descriptions here.

1. Effective leadership and governance for system transformation

During this time of health system transition, and eventual transformation, effective leadership is more critical than ever. Boards and team leaders need to be both responsive and proactive in order to deal with changes at both the local and systemic levels, some of which are more beneficial than others. This stream will focus on the best ways to guide your team through these changes, including creating a culture of collaboration, supporting leadership development, board to board collaboration and tools for good governance.

2. Planning programs for equitable access to care

Only 25-30% of Ontarians can currently access interprofessional team-based primary care and there is a need to achieve greater equity in access to care for diverse populations across the province. To meet this need primary care teams are planning for populations facing myriad barriers to care. This stream will focus on proven ways to identify and respond to these needs, providing care for patients without access to team-based care, all the while ensuring that it does not overwhelm current resources and relationships are leveraged from existing partnerships.

3. Employing and empowering the patient & caregiver perspective

Interprofessional primary care teams were created to provide patient-centred care and many have done so, but with varying levels of success. Patient and caregiver voices are needed to ensure they receive the care and services they need and expect. This stream focuses on the ways teams can effectively include patients and caregivers in their care, whether it be strategic planning or influencing care and service delivery to achieve better outcomes.

4. Strengthening partnerships

Primary care teams are an intrinsic part of a high quality health care system. With so many organizations at local, regional and provincial levels, finding the right partners can be a daunting experience. And yet, in order to provide population-based patient care in a complex environment, forging new partnerships and strengthening current ties are necessary. This stream highlights how primary care teams can do so, whether it be with social and community organizations or through LHIN sub-region collaboration, to provide services such as care coordination.

5. Optimizing use of resources

Primary care teams are challenged every day to provide optimal patient care and they face these challenges, often under less than optimal circumstances, such as limited staffing and isolated patient populations. This stream focuses on making the most of resources, providing lessons which can be applied in diverse team-based primary care settings. Topics of interest include reducing unnecessary treatments and ways small, rural and Northern teams provide patient care.

6. Using data to demonstrate value and improve quality of care

In times of restraint it’s not enough to know you do great work, you have to show it too. It’s equally important to know where improvement is needed. Through Data to Decisions and other initiatives primary care teams are doing exactly that, demonstrating higher quality comprehensive, patient-centered care is related to lower healthcare costs. This stream will share experiences of teams using data to inform program planning and evaluation, optimizing use of EMRs and improving overall quality of care.

7. Clinical innovations for specific populations

Interprofessional primary care teams are well positioned to care for patients with chronic and complex conditions through comprehensive programs using the skills and expertise of diverse healthcare providers working together for the good of the patient. This stream focuses on initiatives teams employ to reach specific populations such as newcomers, LGBTQ and Aboriginal youths and address gaps in care. Topics of interest include palliative care, mental health, and medical assistance in dying (MAID).