December 5, 2016

The government has introduced Bill 41, the Patients First Act. As of December 2016, it is currently in Third Reading. AMO provided a written submission to the Standing Committee of the Legislative Assembly in November 2016.  
 
Bill 41 would implement the Patients First Strategy to transform home, community and primary care, and to strengthen public health. If passed by the Legislature, the Act would amend a number of Acts including the Health Protection and Promotion Act. The government’s stated intent is to enact legislation to support access to high quality, integrated care for patients in Ontario, no matter where they live.
 
AMO was pleased to see that the Bill does not transfer funding and accountability oversight of Public Health Units to Local Health Integration Networks (LHINs). It would, however, institute more formalized linkages between public health and LHINs for population health planning. This is a positive development; however, resourcing issues will need to be addressed to support this enhanced role.