Collingwood added to provincial list of areas in high need of doctors

Status change will allow new physicians to join local Family Health Teams and accept new patients


On behalf of the Joint Municipal Physician Recruitment and Retention Committee (JMPRRC), Chair June Porter and Vice Chair Yvonne Hamlin are pleased to report that the committee has received confirmation from the Department of Health that the City of Collingwood has been declared an area of ​​high medical need.

“The change in status was achieved by working directly with the Ministry of Health and our local regional advisors at Ontario Health, and as a result, the Town of Collingwood will now have the same status as other municipalities in the Georgian Bay region. of the South,” says Committee Chair June Porter.

Additionally, Collingwood City Councilor and Committee Vice-Chair Yvonne Hamlin said, “This is truly great news for the entire Southern Georgian Bay region, as this status change raises the ceiling that prevents family doctors from opening their own practices in Collingwood. This creates an opportunity to further support the Committee’s physician recruitment mandate and will increase access to health care for all area residents and help reduce walk-in care and emergency departments.

Comprised of member municipalities including the Town of The Blue Mountains, Town of Collingwood, Township of Clearview and Municipality of Gray Highlands, the committee worked collaboratively to identify local health care needs and challenges in the entire South Georgian Bay region.

Led by Blue Mountains town resident and committee chair June Porter and Collingwood town councilor and committee vice-chair Yvonne Hamlin, the committee has worked closely with the Department of Health to meet the needs and identified primary health care challenges in southern Georgia. Bay Region and outlines solutions for consideration.

The decision to declare the City of Collingwood a high physician need area will provide opportunities for eligible physicians who join the Family Health Organization (FSO), which is associated with the Georgian Bay Family Health Team , to enroll single patients.

As explained on the Ministry of Health’s website, determining a need domain considers several factors, including the Rurality Index for Ontario (RIO) score, the family physician-to-population ratio and input from Ontario Health – based on factors associated with local demographics, socioeconomic status, population health needs and access considerations.

In response to this decision by the Department of Health, the committee will continue its work to improve access to local and regional health care for the South Georgian Bay region by identifying options to locate and support the recruitment of new physicians. .

To learn more about the Joint Municipal Physician Recruitment and Retention Committee, visit:


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