Innovative local healthcare when and where you need it

Caledon Enterprise
By Monty Laskin/Caledon Community Services

Monty Laskin - CEO CCSEver been sick enough that you needed the healthcare system to step in? By that I mean sick enough that your parents’ loving care, a bowl of soup and a day’s rest wasn’t enough for a return to good health? When care is needed that’s beyond the embrace of family and friends, it’s nice to see our healthcare system step up to the plate and get it right. Right away.

What exactly is that “healthcare system”? It’s often not simple, it’s often not pleasant nor easily accessible and it’s often not local. But when it’s spot on and hits the mark, it sure is appreciated. Whether you’re 12, 32 or 82, good healthcare that’s proactive on wellness and responsive on illness is invaluable.

Sure, we’ve seen a litany of messes in healthcare. No government, provincial or federal, has been above the fray. It’s a complicated file made moreso by myriad players at the table. Each is interested in the patient. And no surprise, each also has other interests. Interests that can, at times, be problematic.

CCS has been working in healthcare for more than two decades. Over the years we’ve invested heavily in senior care and transportation. Now we’re pushing forward on social determinants of health by focusing on poverty reduction and employment training. If you eat well, have a warm bed at night and a job that is satisfying and pays well, you’re probably going to be a lot healthier than if all those things were absent.

CCS, like many other healthcare providers, navigates healthcare services that are sometimes less than straightforward. Sometimes it takes far too many steps to get the service you need, when you need it, where you need it.

So together with Headwaters Healthcare Centres and the Central West LHIN, we’re employing something many of us learned in primary school, the famous KISS principle: Keep It Simple Stupid. It evokes the rule about the shortest point between two lines being a straight line.

It’s the straight line rule that we’re practicing for Caledon’s healthcare with the launch of two very exciting initiatives. The first one is a new centre in town, opening in Bolton on King just east of Queen. It will care for you extremely well when you are referred by your family doctor. The Caledon Specialist Clinic will be able to operate three exam rooms concurrently. Specialists are being recruited in the fields of Obstetrics/Gynecology, Paediatrics, Surgery, Orthopedics and others. What’s more, as an Ontario Telemedicine resource, this new local healthcare will offer services such as Psychiatry and Dermatology. And what’s certainly the best news of all is that all of these specialists will be right here in your community.

Gone is the long drive to a hospital that’s far away from your home in Caledon. CCS is so pleased to be working in close partnership with Headwaters Health Care Centre, along with the support of the Central West LHIN. It is this partnership that has allowed this long-overdue health file to land in Caledon.

Then there’s the Exchange, a hub whose programming revolves around nutrition and community engagement. It has the ability to ensure we all eat properly, our children and seniors enjoy healthy fresh foods daily and there are activities that provide opportunities for everyone to thrive. If that’s not intimately connected to good healthcare I don’t know what is. It has taken a mountain of work and support to get to this point in development. We’re a few weeks away from opening the doors to the community and when we do, we’ll have so many people to thank. The Exchange truly is a community-driven success.

With excitement comes inspiration. So I once again turn to a CCS Board member, Fr. Larry Leger of Holy Family Church, who offered up a great weekly blog a while back. Fr. Larry made an appeal to his flock, saying, “we need saints without cassocks and veils”. He wrote that we need saints who wear jeans, listen to music, go to the movies, go out with their friends, drink coca-cola, eat hot dogs and surf the internet. Fr. Larry suggests that these kinds of people are needed for the 21 century.

I agree! You are needed for these two new community initiatives, the Caledon Specialist Clinic and the Exchange. Both will take flight soon. Both will provide the healthcare service this community needs. When it needs it. Where it needs it.

Along the way, and beyond the services each provides, both of these initiatives can also give you something meaningful to do. The activity will be enjoyable and an opportunity to give back to Caledon. If you’re one of the saints Fr. Larry is talking about, please reach us by contacting my colleague, Brigitte Malo at Give us your inner saint and we’ll give you some very helpful and important community healthcare resources.

Monty Laskin is the CEO of Caledon Community Services

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