National Panel Recognizes North West LHIN’s Excellent Communications in Engaging Communities 


 CPRS Awards

Thunder Bay, ON, May 31, 2017 - The North West Local Health Integration Network (LHIN) has been honoured with a Silver Award of Excellence for engaging individuals and communities through innovative community engagement techniques. The award was given by the Canadian Public Relations Society (CPRS).

Through its Guide Your Health: Your Story, Your Future public campaign conducted between April and June 2015, the North West LHIN collected over 1,500 comments from more than 700 residents who identified areas of the health system that work well and opportunities for improvement. The input gathered through this campaign contributed to the development of the Integrated Health Service Plan (IHSP) 2016-2019. The IHSP assists the North West LHIN in its decision-making about health system transformation, health service delivery, and funding allocations over a three-year period in helping the people of Northwestern Ontario to become healthier.  

This is the LHIN’s first national award of excellence in the Canadian Health Care Campaign of the Year category. The CPRS - a leading public relations professional organization - hosted the annual award ceremony on May 30, 2017 in Kelowna, British Columbia to recognize outstanding public relations programs and projects from across the country. The event coincided with the three-day CPRS annual National Conference held from May 28, 2017.


“We welcome the recognition by the Canadian Public Relations Society which honours the work we do to improve health outcomes. Today, we have a three-year integrated plan which is a reflection of what the residents and health service providers of the Northwest have told us they value in their health system – better quality, improved access, and sustainable system for many generations to come. This award is for the people of Northwestern Ontario who continue to share their stories and invaluable insights which help to plan and shape the health care in our region,” says Laura Kokocinski, CEO, North West LHIN.

Petronilla Ndebele, Director of Corporate Communications and Community Engagement accepted the award on behalf of the North West LHIN and added that, “we are excited to receive this national award, which validates the hard work that the Board, management and staff carry out in collaboration with health service providers in service to the people of Northwestern Ontario. We thank everyone who contributed to the success of this innovative, first of its kind campaign. ”

About CPRS Awards

Founded in 1948, the Canadian Public Relations Society is a not-for-profit organization whose members are engaged in the practice, management or teaching of public relations. Established in 1962, the awards salute outstanding public relations campaigns, internal and external programs and tactics, and the dedication and contribution of public relations professionals. The awards also encourage continuous improvement in the practice of public relations. These awards are exclusive to CPRS members and are a tremendous source for profile and prestige for individuals and teams as they showcase Canada's best public relations talent at work. 



  • Local Health Integration Networks (LHINs) were established under the Local Health System Integration Act in 2006, which sets out their mandate and power to plan, fund and integrate health care and to engage communities.
  • The North West LHIN is responsible for planning, integrating and funding local health services – hospitals, long-term care homes, the Community Care Access Centre, community health centres, community support services, and mental health and addictions agencies. 
  • The North West LHIN and its Board of Directors are responsible for more than $650 million of health care services delivered in Northwestern Ontario.
  • The Local Health System Integration Act, 2006, requires all of Ontario’s 14 LHINs to develop and publish Integrated Health Service Plans every three years. 

Media Contacts

Petronilla Ndebele
Director, Corporate Communications & Community Engagement
807-684-9425, extension 2039
Toll free 1-866-907-5446

Hugh Mullally
Corporate Communications & Community Engagement Consultant

807-684-9425, extension 2013
Toll free 1-866-907-5446