Health Care
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Over the last year, Ontarians made it clear that ensuring a strong health-care system is one of their top priorities. And they also emphasized how, as our population continues to grow and age, building a healthy future will require multiple approaches, including developing cutting-edge technology, focusing on preventive care and mental health, and planning safe, vibrant communities.

Our Conversation with Ontarians
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Our Top Priorities
Read about our strategies and recommendations for how to strengthen Ontario’s Health Care and ensure all students have access to robust mental health care.
What Ontarians Want
A comprehensive approach to health that covers prevention and treatment, for both physical and mental health.
Focus on and funding for scientific research that will lead to new cures and treatments, and provide Ontarians with world-class technology.
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A health-care system that meets the needs of an aging population.
Community planning and development that takes into account the needs of an aging population.
In five years we could be so much further in our scientific advancement. We could be on the way to curing cancer, understanding Alzheimer’s disease, or something even bigger.
- Survey respondent
Over the last year, Ontarians repeatedly expressed excitement about future medical breakthroughs, and said it was important to support the research and development of these discoveries.
When amenities such as grocery stores, medical facilities or community centres are too far away to reach on foot, older adults who no longer drive become less active and are at risk of becoming isolated.
- Glenn Miller, Institute for Research on Public Policy
The aging of Ontario’s population was a common topic, and one that reinforced the need for Ontario to ensure that not just our health-care system but our communities are prepared to offer seniors the services they need.
It is incumbent upon us to get social services and health care more aligned and work together on strategy.
- Barbara Steed, Executive VP of Patient Services at Markham Stouffville Hospital, at the Ontario’s Universities Roundtable on the Aging Population
Building up all the necessary services and programs, we heard repeatedly, will require partnerships and collaboration.
You cannot come out [of a degree program] with a purely clinical approach to everything, because with the older population, so much of it is just how are they doing today. Using a customer service approach to how you provide service and interact with the individual is often more effective than a scripted or clinical approach.
- Laurie Johnston, CEO of the Ontario Retirement Communities Association, at the Ontario’s Universities Roundtable on the Aging Population
Ontarians regularly stressed that ensuring a healthy future for Ontario requires holistic and comprehensive care that covers physical and mental health, focuses on prevention as well as treatment, and takes a patient-centric approach.
There is considerable research that occurs in universities, and within the province’s hospitals, and across other providers and institutions. Investment in this type of research helps to drive innovation and facilitate commercialization, while also acting as a proven economic engine for the province.
- Anthony Dale, President and CEO of the Ontario Hospital Association, at the Ontario’s Universities Roundtable on the Aging Population
We heard that universities are integral partners in all this work, but that investments and partnerships are also vital to getting the most out of our research and our talent.
I am nearing 65 and I worry about my medications, health care and being able to afford to stay in my house and look after basic needs.
- Survey respondent
Some Ontarians expressed concern about whether our health-care system would be able to provide all the services they need in their senior years.
We are moving away from a fairly siloed way of thinking and working, where people become very skilled in their specific area of expertise and profession, to a world where really the solutions have to be much more interconnected, much more complex, stretching across multiple disciplines.
- Sophia Ikura, Senior Director, Community Engagement and Corporate Affairs, Toronto Central LHIN, at the Ontario’s Universities Roundtable on the Aging Population
But most of all we heard about the importance of creative thinking, collaboration across private and public sectors, and meaningful government support in creating a healthy future for all Ontarians.
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Our Top Priorities

Read about our strategies and recommendations for how to strengthen Ontario’s Health Care and ensure all students have access to robust mental health care.

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Building Strong Communities

Learn more about what Ontarians had to say about building strong communities.
read the report

In our report, you will find a comprehensive summary of what we heard from Ontarians and how Ontario's universities are working across all sectors to help students thrive, support our communities, and drive a growing, dynamic province.