St. Catharines, ON – NOHT-ÉSON partners and staff gathered at the Fort Erie Native Friendship Centre on April 3 to meet with Ontario Health’s President and Chief Executive Officer Matthew Anderson.
He was joined by Susan deRyk, Chief Regional Officer for Ontario Health Central and West Regions, Ontario Health West’s Kris Bannerman, Director of System Strategy, Planning, Design, and Implementation, and Kelly Cimek, Director of Capacity, Access, and Flow.
Following an official opening and smudging provided by the Fort Erie Native Friendship Centre, the NOHT-ÉSON’s Director of Planning, Sabrina Piluso, provided an overview of the organization and its structure, as well as highlights from recent initiatives, including Seamless Care Optimizing the Patient Experience (SCOPE Niagara), Let’s Go Home, and the COVID, Cold, and Flu Care Clinics.
Partners who were present took the opportunity to share the successes and challenges facing health care and social services in the NOHT-ÉSON’s catchment area.
Some representatives emphasized the organization and its work have allowed for greater partnerships and collaboration on various initiatives that would not have occurred five years ago. Others stressed the importance of sustainability to keep the work moving forward.
A challenge cited was the quick turnaround time required for some projects, which sometimes does not allow for meaningful engagement or processes to be fully explored before implementation.
Partners also stressed the importance of continuing with the NOHT-ÉSON’s consensus decision-making model as the organization looks to become incorporated.
Anderson and deRyk were impressed with the work achieved to date and appreciated the challenges faced, recognizing the importance of local-level planning.