Home First

Mary - Home First

New! Click the picture above and watch a Home First video on how it is changing the care of seniors in Ontario. (August 2011)

Home is Where the Heart is….

Home First is a significant shift in health care thinking. When a person enters a hospital with an acute episode, every effort is made to ensure adequate resources are in place to support the person to ultimately go home on discharge.  Only when returning home with care is not possible or safe to do so, are other options considered.

Essentially, Home First is about providing the right care, in the right place, at the right time and for the right cost.

People who receive care in their homes are generally happier, more comfortable in a familiar setting and tend to heal more quickly.  In addition, getting better at home eases pressures on hospitals and long wait times in our hospital emergency rooms and reduces the risk of infections that can be picked up while in a hospital.

In October 2010, the North West LHIN began to implement a Home First philosophy, in partnership with our North West Community Care Access Centre (NW CCAC) in Thunder Bay. Plans to implement Home First all across the region are presently underway.

Right now, 15% of the population in Northwestern Ontario is aged 65 and over. Within 20 years (by 2030), this number is expected to increase to 27%.

Too often, seniors in our LHIN are waiting in hospitals and entering long-term care homes with health care needs that can be safely met in their homes, with the proper home care support.  Home First is not meant to replace a hospital stay or an admission to a long-term care home.  As always, the type of care an individual needs is the key factor in any decision about the best place for them toreceive the care they require.

With the second highest rate of Alternate Level of Care (ALC) patients in hospitals across the province, the North West LHIN’s efforts to promote and implement a Home First philosophy in our region will continue.

For more information on Home First, please contact Nicole Brown at  1-807-467-8639 or nicole.brown@lhins.on.ca.

Relevant Links

Home First Implementation Guide and Toolkit (currently being updated)    

North West LHIN/North West CCAC Home First Q&A