Ontario is investing more than $4 million to increase access to paediatric services for children and youth in Simcoe County so they have the care they need, when they need it, right in their own community. This is part of the government’s investment of an additional $330 million each year in paediatric health services at hospitals and community-based health care facilities across the province.
“Our government is making record investments in the health and well-being of our children,” said Sylvia Jones, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health. “The pediatric funding provided to services in Simcoe County will have a tremendous impact on children and their families, ensuring they receive faster access to care when they need it.”
The over $4 million in additional funding will support programs and services at the Royal Victoria Regional Health Centre ($392,000) and the Children’s Treatment Network of Simcoe-York ($3,690,000), which serves both Simcoe County and York Region. The funding will be used to:
- Hire a social worker at Royal Victoria Regional Health Centre to support pediatric admissions for diabetes diagnosis, eating disorders and mental health treatment and increase access to treatment.
- Hire a Child Life Specialist at Royal Victoria Regional Health Centre in partnership with Regional Women and Children’s Network, to help avoid unnecessary emergency department visits as well as connect families to surgical recovery and mental health supports.
- Hire and retain more staff to increase access to children’s rehabilitation services, including speech-language pathology, physiotherapy and occupational therapy at the Children’s Treatment Network of Simcoe-York and Royal Victoria Regional Health Centre.
“Our government is taking action to ensure children and youth in every corner of the province have quick and convenient access to the care they need,” said Dawn Gallagher Murphy, Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Health. “This investment will make it easier and faster for young people in Simcoe County to connect to the care they need closer to home.”
This consistent and stable annual funding increase will ensure hospitals and children’s rehabilitation providers in Simcoe County have the people, resources and technology to improve access to pediatric care and prevent backlogs. Over 100 high-priority initiatives are being quickly implemented across Ontario to ensure children and youth in every corner of the province can connect to emergency care, surgeries, ambulatory services, diagnostic imaging, and mental health services.
“Ontario is putting children and youth first by ensuring they receive the care they need when they need it,” said Michael Parsa, Minister of Children, Community and Social Services. “Our government’s significant investment in pediatric care will reduce waitlists, improve access to clinical assessments, early intervention, and children’s rehabilitation services, such as speech-language pathology, physiotherapy, and occupational therapy. This means less time waiting for services, quicker recovery, and better quality of life for children and their families in Simcoe County and across the province.”
Through Your Health: A Plan for Connected and Convenient Care, the Ontario government is providing significant financial support to hospitals and communities to improve how they deliver pediatric care – ensuring Ontarians of all ages can access care easier, faster, and closer to home in their communities.
- Supporting the mental health and well-being of people in Ontario is a key priority for this government. That is why we are providing a comprehensive and connected mental health and addictions (MHA) system that offers high-quality, evidence-based services and supports where and when they need them.
- In 2020, the government released Roadmap to Wellness, our plan to build a world-class mental health and addictions system.
- In addition to investing in existing services, Roadmap to Wellness investments are supporting the introduction of new innovative programs to begin to address wait lists and times and ensure access to timely and appropriate services.
- For example, Ontario recently expanded One Stop Talk, a virtual walk-in mental health counselling service for children, youth and families. Once fully implemented, it will provide immediate, low barrier access to brief counselling services through a single virtual access point from anywhere in the province.
- The Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services funds children’s rehabilitation services for children and youth with special needs. These services include speech-language pathology, physiotherapy and occupational therapy delivered in schools and community locations. The Preschool Speech and Language Program provides assessments and services for children with speech and language difficulties and disorders from birth to transition to school.
- Families with questions about their child’s development and support needs can contact their local children’s treatment centre or Surrey Place in Toronto.