Keeping Halton healthy by ensuring access to local family physicians

For over a decade, the Halton Region Physician Recruitment program has actively marketed Halton to current and prospective physicians to help address both current and future physician needs. In 2013, the Physician Recruitment program enjoyed another successful year with an additional 22 family doctors establishing their practice in the Region. Since Halton’s Physician Recruitment Initiative began in 2003, more than 200 new family doctors have made Halton home to their practice. Attracting new physicians to establish medical practices in Halton is one of the key priority areas in the 2012-2014 Citizens’ Priorities Action Plan,

The Halton Region Physician Recruitment program works in collaboration with all four Local Municipalities, local hospitals, clinics and community representatives to recruit physicians to locate their practices in Halton. The program also assists hospitals with their specialist recruiting, such as psychiatrists, pediatricians, emergency room physicians and hospitalists. 

The Region’s Physician Recruitment Coordinator works directly with prospective and existing physicians to ensure a strong family medicine presence in the Halton Community. Since the program’s inception, the Physician Recruitment Program has implemented a number of initiatives including: 

  • Hosting community tours, special events and physician meetings for prospective family physicians
  • Developing marketing materials to support physicians including a Halton Doctors landing page on the Region’s website (www.haltondoctors.ca)
  • Providing ongoing status updates for residents regarding new family physicians in Halton accepting patients
  • Participating in annual trade shows and recruitment tours for physicians, both nationally and provincially
  • Hosting Halton’s Physician Appreciation week which takes place this April 28-May2, 2014
  • Assisting with the arrangement of medical student and medical resident community electives and rotations 

Halton’s Physician Recruitment program also continues to provide support to the Halton McMaster Family Health Centre in Burlington. The Family Health Centre is part of the 2009 Halton McMaster partnership which saw Halton Region and the City of Burlington provide ten-year funding to McMaster University to help establish a variety of programs in the Region. In June 2013, the first group of Halton McMaster Family Health Centre family medicine residents completed their training and from those five residents, three are now establishing practices in Halton. Currently there are eight first-year residents and six second-year residents based at the Family Health Centre site. 

To see a list of newly recruited doctors who are accepting patients across Halton, visit www.halton.ca/newphysicians. For more information on the Physician Recruitment program, visit www.haltondoctors.ca

As always, if you have any Regional concerns or comments you would like to share, please feel free to email me at gary.carr@halton.ca. You can also find me on Twitter @garycarrhalton, LinkedIn or Facebook. To receive further updates on Regional issues, please subscribe to my quarterly e-newsletter, “The Carr Report.”