Frequently Asked Questions
What is a Community Health Centre?
Ontario's Community Health Centres have been around for over forty years and were inspired by the ideas of Tommy Douglas' vision of Medicare. Tommy Douglas hoped that our health system would focus more on keeping people well - not just treating them when they get sick.
To do this, CHCs deliver primary care services in combination with health promotion and illness prevention services. CHCs stand out as they have a strong community development focus. While CHCs focus on promoting the health of individuals and families, CHCs also work to address social, economic and environmental problems that negatively impacting people's health.
CHCs prioritize improving the health and wellbeing of individuals who have traditionally faced barriers accessing health services.
What type of staff and professionals provide services at NorWest Community Health Centres?
The interdisciplinary team includes nurses, nurse practitioners, family doctors, dietitian, therapists, foot care nurses, chiropodist, community health workers, nutritionist, diabetes educator, and medical and administrative staff.
Do you have to be a client of NorWest Community Health Centres to use their walk in clinic?
The walk in clinic at our Longlac site is open to clients with a nurse practitioner or physician only. Walk in services are for non-urgent clinical issues such as Coughs and cold, fever, ear aches, sore throat, infections, pregnancy testing, sexual health, birth control, sexually transmitted infection (STI) and HIV testing, suture removal.
How can I become a client at NorWest Community Health Centres?
NorWest CHC is committed to ensuring that individuals and families that face the greatest barriers to accessing health care are given priority in accessing the programs and services they need. Please come to our clinics to speak to our staff and complete a Request for Services form. When your request for services form is completed, our intake team will review it and get in touch with you to discuss the programs and services available, and, refer you to those you said you needed. Although we may not be able to provide you with all the services you have requested right away, we will try our best to offer you other resources while you wait.
What types of health promotion, health education and community-based programs and services does NorWest CHC offer?
NorWest CHC offers a variety of health promotion, health education and community-based programs and services. We offer seniors programming, programs for children (at local schools and on-site), community kitchens, as well as regularly scheduled workshops and information sessions on a variety of health and wellness topics, just to name a few. You do not need to be a registered client to participate in health education, health promotion and community-based programs. Please review our calendar of events located on our website.
Do I have to pay for services at NorWest CHC?
All programs and services are offered free of charge. There is a cost for receiving a copy of your medical records.
What makes NorWest CHC different from other medical clinics?
We believe that it is important to provide access to services that promotes the health and wellbeing of the individuals, families and communities we live in by providing services to support and individual's physical, mental, social, spiritual, and emotional well-being. We work to provide services that will increase access to program and services, reduce barriers and support inclusion.
My family and I don't speak or understand English very well. Can NorWest CHC help us?
Yes, NorWest CHC responds to the needs of its community in a culturally sensitive and respectful manner. We strive to offer services in the language spoken by clients and community members and we try to hire staff that are reflective of the community we serve. We will ensure there are trained interpreters when needed during your appointment.
Can I come and meet with a community health worker if I am not a client of the centre?
Yes, you can ask to meet with our community health workers. They can assist clients with issues such as income, housing, food security, health literacy, life skills, and social supports. We can also help you connect with other agencies or community organizations that can help you with your problems if we can't.
If I am registered to a nurse practitioner, but need to see a doctor, how does that work?
Nurse practitioners are highly skilled primary care providers. If your health condition requires you to see a family doctor, the nurse practitioner will consult with family doctors within our organization and ensure that you are provided with the care that you require. An appointment may be scheduled with the family doctor if needed. Like many family doctors, nurse practitioners are able to make referrals to specialists such as surgeons, gynecologists, and pain specialists as an example.
I would like to provide feedback about my experiences at NorWest CHC. Who can I talk to?
NorWest CHC supports an individual's right to provide feedback about their experiences related to any aspect of their care or participation in our programs and services. Individuals may speak directly to any staff member for assistance. Issues that staff are unable to assist with will be directed to a manager.
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