A Team Approach to Care

By Kathleen Keeshan, BSc

The Brockton and Area Family Health Team (BAFHT) is one of the 150 Family Health Teams (FHTs) in the Province of Ontario. Established by the Ministry of Health and Long-term Care in 2005, FHTs are designed to reduce wait times, and to improve community access to healthcare services at the local level. FHTs are fully funded by the Ministry and use state-of-the-art information technology to provide secure access to health records and lab results. FHTs offer a “holistic” approach to health care, which means that the “whole” person is treated and that, in addition to physical symptoms, psychological and social factors affecting the individual’s health are also considered during the healing process. FHTs use a “population” approach to healthcare, which means the needs of the entire population served by the FHT are considered, not just the needs of those individuals who come in for appointments. This gives the FHT a better understanding of the programs and services required in the community.

The BAFHT is a group of healthcare professionals, each with their own area of expertise. Like any good team, we have great players, we work together, and we share a common goal. That goal is to provide the local community with the highest level of healthcare possible – we strive to find new ways to improve healthcare, and we evaluate both current practices and new innovations for their success in meeting that end. The BAFHT works collaboratively with local health and community service providers, forming community partnerships.

The BAFHT has administrative offices in Walkerton, Chesley and Durham, and satellite clinics in Mildmay and Paisley. Our team consists of family physicians, nurse practitioners, registered nurses/health educators, kinesiologists, social workers, dietitians, pharmacists, foot care specialists and administrative staff.

If your family physician is a member of the BAFHT, he/she will have the support of the BAFHT healthcare professionals. You will continue to see your family physician on a regular basis and benefit from their on-going care; however, other members of the BAFHT may assist your physician in providing primary healthcare services, chronic disease management, and self-help tools to help you manage your health and well-being. Our team members will help you navigate through the healthcare system, offering support and encouragement along the way.