A6-a - Digital Coalition – How a coalition of the willing is changing the face of primary care

6. Enabling high -performing primary health care

  • Date: Thursday, September 19, 2019
  • Concurrent Session A
  • Time: 2:30pm-3:15pm
  • Room: Harbour A & B
  • Style: Presentation (information provided to audience, with opportunity for audience to ask question)
  • Focus: Practical (e.g. Presentation on how to implement programs and/or practices in the team environment)
  • Target Audience: Leadership (ED, clinical lead, board chair, board member, etc.), Clinical providers, Administrative staff, Representatives of stakeholder/partner organizations

Learning Objectives

  • Learn how leveraging resources can improve referral quality and patient safety
  • Learn time saving methods to collaborate and disseminate ‘forms’ across various primary care settings
  • Learn how ‘form reform’ can improve workflows within primary care
  • Learn how ‘form reform’ can build relationships between primary care and healthcare institutions (e.g.: acute care, home care, etc.)  "


In partnership with 11 Family Health Teams (FHT) and 17 other Primary Care Practice (PCP) Models, the South West Digital Coalition (DC) represents a cross-sector partnership charged with deploying regional digital health priorities. The goal is to build capacity within primary care (PC) offices to manage information in a way that meets the needs of providers/staff, while improving the quality and experience of patient care.     A priority identified by the Coalition is the management of referral forms between PC Electronic Medical Record (EMR) systems and health service providers.    The DC is helping change the way new/updated forms reach primary care.  The normal distribution models of new forms that are usually mass faxed/emailed to primary care offices has been disrupted by our efforts, leading to specialists in our region now preferring to co-design new forms in more consumable EMR friendly formats.  The DC is working to move the co-design process further upstream with partners    Service providers have benefited from the wide distribution of EMR-compatible resources that meet a minimum standard of functionality. In turn, the breadth and depth of EMR resources vetted by the DC will continue to grow and serve a wider geography of PCPs (i.e.: chronic disease tools, patient engagement tools)    As more PCPs and stakeholders are engaged, the DC will be better equipped to identify digital health priorities beyond basic referral and requisition forms. Although this initiative is still in its formative stages (<6 mths), there is potential to impact wait times by reducing returned or rejected referrals/requisitions.  



  • Rachel LaBonte, Partnering For Quality Program Lead & Digital Coalition Co-Lead, South West LHIN
  • Dr. Paul Gill, Digital - Clinical Lead, South West LHIN
  • Phil Dalton, Digital Health Coach & Digital Coalition Co-Lead, Partnering For Quality Digital Health Coach & Digital Coalition Co-Lead


  • 11 Family Health Teams across the South West LHIN region (including QIDSS)
  • 17 other Primary Care Practice Models across the South West LHIN region
  • Various Acute Care Organizations
  • Partnering for Quality Team
  • South West Clinical Leads (Physicians)