Primary Health Care Task Group

The PHCTG has completed its mandate and has concluded its efforts.  In the coming months we will be announcing new initiatives to address primary health care in Erie St. Clair. 

The Primary Health Care Task Group was created with the aim of evolving the present system to a more comprehensive (complete) health care system that provides necessary health care in the right place, at the right time, by the right people.  This initiative allowed the Emergency Departments to continue with their focus and strength of providing timely and effective episodic health care services that complement and support the primary health care system.

“This is an important step forward for local health care. I am especially pleased that the new committee has about half rural and half urban members, with all three municipal areas represented.”
- Pat Hoy, MPP for Chatham-Kent-Essex

Committee Recommendations

  1. Develop and implement a comprehensive care model to enhance the delivery of COPD care in Chatham-Kent, to provide promotion/illness prevention strategies i.e. smoking cessation beginning at an early age, to deliver the service in a non-hospital setting, to monitor return visits for COPD to the ED, and to monitor ED visits and wait times for COPD patients utilizing the navigation tool once changes are fully implemented
  2. Retain the consulting services of a physician whose sole expertise is Respiratory Medicine
  3. Ensure that the patient navigation tool is consistently updated with current information
  4. Focus their next study on Mental Health and Addictions in Sarnia-Lambton

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To improve access to primary health care and to maximize the current services available.
  • Aims:
    • Increased availability of primary health care options
    • Greater equity of service
    • Improved health outcomes

In order to achieve the above goal, the Primary Health Care Task Group will:

  • Define a comprehensive primary health care system vision for the Erie St. Clair region
  • Identify the critical success factors, barriers, and enablers required to achieve this vision
  • Identify the likely causes for current patterns-of-use in the primary health care system
  • Recommend actions and plans to address the above barriers
  • Recommend actions and plans to assist with the adoption of the proposed comprehensive primary health care system
  • Define a proposed broad set of primary health care services for the ESC LHIN region indicating how they should operate, where the services should be located, and who should provide them
  • Define the critical timelines, roles and responsibilities of key stakeholders as they relate to the proposed primary health care vision
  • A county-by-county review of the current state of primary health care in the region
  • A description of primary health care practices and assessment of the likely causes for current use patterns across the region
  • Consideration of the primary health care needs of specific populations (e.g. unattached / Aboriginal / Mental Health / Francophone)
  • Consideration of rural vs urban population requirements
  • Consideration of primary health care approaches to the management of chronic diseases
  • Consideration of what is in the ESC LHIN’s mandate to action vs the outside stakeholder’s mandate (e.g. Ministry of Community and Support Services, Emergency Medical Services, Public Health)
  • Prioritized recommendations (options) for an improved primary care health system in the ESC LHIN region that considers the following:
  • Costs for improvements
  • Health Human Resources needed to deliver care and where these resources should be placed
  • Capital dollar requirements (e.g. small equipment, diagnostic machines)
  • Risks with each option
  • High level communication and education on the proposed primary health care system
  • High level implementation plans with outcomes, targets, metrics and milestones
  • Recommendations for the alignment of region-wide findings with the advice of the Rural and Northern Health Care Panel
  • Provide status updates on a regular basis to the ESC LHIN Board, stakeholders, and public on the achievement of the deliverables
Task Group Membership

Click on the members name to view their bio information. 

Dr. Glenn Bartlett  Chair Sarnia/Lambton
Dr. Chris Thrasher Vice Chair Windsor/Essex
Margaret (Meg) Connelly Community Chatham-Kent
Anne Miskovsky Community Windsor/Essex
Wendy Liebing Community Windsor/Essex
Lynda Monik Community Health Centre Windsor/Essex
Catherine Hedges Emergency Medical Services Windsor/Essex
Heather Martin Long-Term Care Sarnia/Lambton
Laura Liebrock Mental Health Windsor/Essex
Willi Kirenko Nurse Practitioner Chatham-Kent
Dr. Martin Lees Physician Sarnia/Lambton
Kelly Farrugia Registered Nurse Chatham-Kent
Diane Lozon Social Worker Chatham-Kent
Sonya Vani Physiotherapist Windsor/Essex



  • Launch the Primary Health Care Task Group responsible to guide the successful implementation for the above objectives and deliverables
  • The ESC LHIN Board will:
  • Determine membership, Chair and Vice Chair based on applications submitted (geographic and skill mix consideration)
  • Determine the responsibility of the Chair and Vice Chair

Primary Health Care Task Group
The Primary Health Care Task Group will:

  • Develop a Project Charter that outlines the ESC LHIN’s mandate and defines the Terms of Reference that overviews the group’s purpose, goals, objectives, roles and responsibilities
  • Define and finalize the high level process for achieving the objectives including:
  • Launch Request for Proposal (RFP) process for a vendor to facilitate the work of the Primary Health Care Task Group
  • Select preferred vendor
  • Approve the work plan of the preferred vendor
  • Act as the steering mechanism for the selected vendor
  • Develop consensus on final recommendations
  • Conduct and support community engagement as required
  • Provide support and signoff on the prioritized recommendations before going to the ESC LHIN Board for approval


  • Approximately 7-10 meetings per year, or as required
  • Meetings will take place at the ESC LHIN located at 180 Riverview Drive, Chatham, ON
  • Teleconference lines will be provided for meetings that do not require in-person attendance
  • Travel and meal expenses are the responsibility of the Primary Health Care Task Group member


  • The work and members are accountable to the ESC LHIN Board of Directors through ESC LHIN staff
  • ESC LHIN staff will provide support to the Primary Health Care Task Group, as required
  • Interim and final work of the Primary Health Care Task Group will be presented to the ESC LHIN Board for approval

Geographical Sub-Committee

  • The Primary Health Care Task Group may chose to convene 3 additional sub-committees to provide geographical input specific to the deliverables
  • Should the Primary Health Care Task Group convene geographical committees, the selection process and Terms of Reference will be determined by the Primary Health Care Task Group and communicated through the ESC LHIN website