The Ministry has published for public comment notices of two proposed regulations under the Local Health System Integration Act. Both proposed regulations are aimed at increasing community engagement in the integration process.
The first proposed regulation, published in the Ontario Gazette on July 26, 2008, establishes guidelines for local health integration networks (LHINs) for Aboriginal community engagement activities. If passed, the regulation would require each LHIN (or groups of two or more LHINs, if it is determined after consultation that a joint committee would adequately reflect the diversity of the Aboriginal communities and peoples served in their catchment areas) to establish a committee to represent the diverse Aboriginal peoples and communities within the LHIN’s geographic boundaries.
Each committee may include (as appropriate) First Nations, Inuit, Métis, representatives from on-reserve and off-reserve organizations, representatives of Aboriginal health service providers, and Aboriginal community and women’s organizations. The LHIN would engage the committee on health needs and priorities, as well as health service delivery issues affecting the local Aboriginal population. Each LHIN would be required to provide information on its engagement activities, including the content, frequency and format of such activities, in its annual report. Comments on this proposed regulation were accepted up to September 26, 2008.
The second proposed regulation, if passed, would require each LHIN (or groups of two or more LHINs if it is determined after consultation that a joint committee would provide adequate representation for the Francophone communities) to establish a committee to engage the Francophone community on the local health system. Published in the Ontario Gazette on September 13, 2008 the notice provides that members of the committee would be involved with organizations that are connected to the community, and in the planning and delivery of health care services in the area (e.g., community organizations, schools, universities, members of regulated health professions and health service providers).
In particular, the committee would provide advice to the LHIN on:
- how best to engage the local Francophone community and stakeholders in local health system planning;
- the health needs of the local Francophone community;
- how to improve access, accessibility and integration of French language health services;
- methods for taking into account the need to provide services to the Francophone community; and
- identifying and designating health service providers for the provision of French language health services.
In its annual report, each LHIN would be required to report on the content, frequency and format of its Francophone community engagement activities, membership of the committee and fulfilment of the committee’s mandate. The Minister will consider comments on the proposed regulation until November 12, 2008.