Canada: Designation Process For Ontario Health Teams

Health Law Bulletin
Last Updated: May 7 2019
Article by Laurie M. Turner and Jordana Keslassy

This is the next bulletin in our series regarding Bill 74, The People's Health Care Act, 2019. As of April 17, 2019, Bill 74 was on its third reading in the Ontario legislature, after previously being considered by the Standing Committee on Social Policy. If passed, Bill 74 will enact the Connecting Care Act, 2019 (the "Act").

As described in one of our previous bulletins issued on Bill 74, the Act will authorize the Minister of Health and Long-Term Care to designate certain individuals and entities as an integrated care delivery system ("ICDS").

ICDSs have been described by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (the "Ministry") as "[...] a new model to integrate care and funding that will enable patients, families, communities and providers to better work together."[1] In follow-up to the Act - which provides limited guidance as to how ICDSs will be designated - the Ministry published resources explaining the designation process for ICDSs, which are referred to by the Ministry (and will be referred to below) as "Ontario Health Teams".

The purpose of this bulletin is to provide an overview of the application process for Ontario Health Teams.

Significant dates in respect of the process for designation as an Ontario Health Team are included at the end of this bulletin. Those interested in applying for such a designation should be aware of the forthcoming application deadline.

Who Can Apply to Become an Ontario Health Team

As part of the additional resources it made available in respect of Ontario Health Teams, the Ministry published Ontario Health Teams: Guidance for Health Care Providers and Organizations (the "Guidance Document"). The Guidance Document sets out the process for applicants to respond to the Ministry's open invitation to "providers" to demonstrate their readiness to become an Ontario Health Team (or part of an Ontario Health Team). The Guidance Document describes Ontario Health Teams as being "groups of providers and organizers that are clinically and fiscally accountable for delivering a full and coordinated continuum of care to a defined geographic population" and includes a non-exhaustive list of services that Ontario Health Teams will be expected to deliver at their maturity, including, for example, primary care, secondary care, home care, palliative care and emergency health services.

Significantly, through the Guidance Document, the Ministry has:

  • expressed its objective of having all health service providers[2] eventually join or become Ontario Health Teams;[3]
  • indicated that the assessment process (described below) will be repeated until full provincial coverage of Ontario Health Teams is achieved; and
  • stated that applicants that are not ready to participate in the first round of the assessment process will have further opportunities to participate, with additional dates to be announced by the Ministry.

Path to Designation as an Ontario Health Team

Becoming a designated Ontario Health Team involves 4 steps:

  1. Self-Assessing Readiness
  2. Validating Provider Readiness
  3. Becoming an Ontario Health Team Candidate
  4. Becoming a Designated Ontario Health Team

Self-Assessing Readiness

All interested providers and organizations are invited to complete and submit a self-assessment form.[4]

Validating Provider Readiness

Initial Assessment 

Based on an applicant's self-assessment form, it will be identified as falling into one of two categories:

  1. "In Discovery" - applicants who do not demonstrate a high degree of readiness; or
  2. "In Development" - applicants who demonstrate a higher degree of readiness.

Applicants determined to be "In Discovery" will not be invited to submit a full application but will receive supports (for example, forms, data and analytics) to increase their readiness. Applicants determined to be "In Development" will be invited to submit a full application.

Notably, the Guidance Document specifically contemplates that the Ministry may ask applicants to collaborate / join with additional applicants and re-submit a joint self-assessment.

Full Application & In-Person Visit 

Applicants that are invited to make a full application will be required to submit a full application to demonstrate their ability to meet the "Candidate readiness criteria".[5] Applications (which will be provided to those applicants that have advanced to this second stage) will be evaluated, and those that demonstrate a higher degree of readiness for implementation will be invited for an in-person visit.

Through an in person assessment, applicants that are "demonstrably ready" to become candidates for Ontario Health Teams will be identified. Though further requirements of the visit will be shared with invitees, the Guidance Document provides that applicants will be expected to present a thorough current state assessment of their model and short and long-term vision for the future of patient care at the in person meeting.

Becoming an Ontario Health Team Candidate

Applicants that demonstrate that they meet the critical readiness criteria through the invitational application and in-person visit, will be selected to begin implementation of the Ontario Health Team model and will be referred to as "Ontario Health Team Candidates".

Becoming a Designated Ontario Health Team

Candidates that are deemed prepared to receive an integration funding envelope and enter into an accountability agreement are qualified to be designated as an Ontario Health Team.

Maturation of Ontario Health Teams

The Guidance Document contemplates that it will take several years for Ontario Health Teams to be fully operational across the province, and that the government will take steps to ensure that transitions occur over time with the goal of providing seamless patient care.

Appendix B to the Guidance Document sets forth the Ministry's very detailed expectations of:

  • Applicants to become "Ontario Health Team Candidates"[6]
  • Ontario Health Teams Candidates following their first year of operations
  • Ontario Health Teams at maturity

In each case, the expectations fall within 8 categories:

  1. Patient Care & Experience
  2. Patient Partnership & Community Engagement
  3. Defined Patient Population
  4. In-Scope Services
  5. Leadership, Accountability, Governance
  6. Performance Measurement, Quality Improvement & Continuous Learning
  7. Funding and Incentive Structure
  8. Digital Health

The specific expectations for each of the three stages (i.e. to become a candidate, Ontario Health Team - 1 year out, and Ontario Health Team - at maturity) can be accessed here by selecting "Ontario Health Team Guidance Document".

Stay tuned for subsequent bulletins setting out further details of Ontario Health Teams, such as the applicable funding and governance models.

Important Dates for Applicants

Assessment Process 


Open call for self-assessments

April 3, 2019 (Passed)

Deadline to submit self-assessments 

May 15, 2019 

Selected groups will be invited to submit a full application

June 3, 2019

Deadline to submit full applications

July 12, 2019

Announce Ontario Health Teams

Fall 2019

The Ministry will continue to accept, assess and evaluate groups interested in becoming an Ontario Health Team

Future deadlines will be announced


[1] See: 'Ontario Taking Next Step in Building a Connected Public Health Care System for Patients'.

[2] The Guidance Document refers to applicants as "health service providers". However, it is unclear whether the Ministry's intention was that this term: (i)  has the meaning ascribed to it in the Act; or (ii) would refer generally to health providers (organizations and individuals). The Act does not clearly limit the composition of Ontario Health Teams to health service providers, stating that "The Minister may designate a person or entity, or a group of persons or entities, as an integrated care delivery system." [Emphasis Added]

[3] This objective highlights an important point that Ontario Health Teams may be comprised of a single organization provided that the organization delivers at least three of the services prescribed by section 29(2)(a) of the Act (and otherwise meets any future prescribed conditions and requirements).

[4] This form can be accessed here.

[5] Additional details of these criteria are included below under the heading, "Maturation of Ontario Health Teams". The full list of criteria is set out in Appendix B to the Guidance Document.

[6] As further detailed above under the heading "Full Application & In-Person Visit".

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Similar Articles
Relevancy Powered by MondaqAI
In association with
Related Topics
Similar Articles
Relevancy Powered by MondaqAI
Related Articles
Up-coming Events Search
Font Size:
Mondaq on Twitter
Mondaq Free Registration
Gain access to Mondaq global archive of over 375,000 articles covering 200 countries with a personalised News Alert and automatic login on this device.
Mondaq News Alert (some suggested topics and region)
Select Topics
Registration (please scroll down to set your data preferences)

Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including your content preferences, for three primary purposes (full details of Mondaq’s use of your personal data can be found in our Privacy and Cookies Notice):

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting to show content ("Content") relevant to your interests.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, news alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our content providers ("Contributors") who contribute Content for free for your use.

Mondaq hopes that our registered users will support us in maintaining our free to view business model by consenting to our use of your personal data as described below.

Mondaq has a "free to view" business model. Our services are paid for by Contributors in exchange for Mondaq providing them with access to information about who accesses their content. Once personal data is transferred to our Contributors they become a data controller of this personal data. They use it to measure the response that their articles are receiving, as a form of market research. They may also use it to provide Mondaq users with information about their products and services.

Details of each Contributor to which your personal data will be transferred is clearly stated within the Content that you access. For full details of how this Contributor will use your personal data, you should review the Contributor’s own Privacy Notice.

Please indicate your preference below:

Yes, I am happy to support Mondaq in maintaining its free to view business model by agreeing to allow Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors whose Content I access
No, I do not want Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors

Also please let us know whether you are happy to receive communications promoting products and services offered by Mondaq:

Yes, I am happy to received promotional communications from Mondaq
No, please do not send me promotional communications from Mondaq
Terms & Conditions (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd (Mondaq). Mondaq grants you a non-exclusive, revocable licence to access the Website and associated services, such as the Mondaq News Alerts (Services), subject to and in consideration of your compliance with the following terms and conditions of use (Terms). Your use of the Website and/or Services constitutes your agreement to the Terms. Mondaq may terminate your use of the Website and Services if you are in breach of these Terms or if Mondaq decides to terminate the licence granted hereunder for any reason whatsoever.

Use of

To Use you must be: eighteen (18) years old or over; legally capable of entering into binding contracts; and not in any way prohibited by the applicable law to enter into these Terms in the jurisdiction which you are currently located.

You may use the Website as an unregistered user, however, you are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the Content or to receive the Services.

You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these Terms or with the prior written consent of Mondaq. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information from the Content. Nor shall you extract information about users or Contributors in order to offer them any services or products.

In your use of the Website and/or Services you shall: comply with all applicable laws, regulations, directives and legislations which apply to your Use of the Website and/or Services in whatever country you are physically located including without limitation any and all consumer law, export control laws and regulations; provide to us true, correct and accurate information and promptly inform us in the event that any information that you have provided to us changes or becomes inaccurate; notify Mondaq immediately of any circumstances where you have reason to believe that any Intellectual Property Rights or any other rights of any third party may have been infringed; co-operate with reasonable security or other checks or requests for information made by Mondaq from time to time; and at all times be fully liable for the breach of any of these Terms by a third party using your login details to access the Website and/or Services

however, you shall not: do anything likely to impair, interfere with or damage or cause harm or distress to any persons, or the network; do anything that will infringe any Intellectual Property Rights or other rights of Mondaq or any third party; or use the Website, Services and/or Content otherwise than in accordance with these Terms; use any trade marks or service marks of Mondaq or the Contributors, or do anything which may be seen to take unfair advantage of the reputation and goodwill of Mondaq or the Contributors, or the Website, Services and/or Content.

Mondaq reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to take any action that it deems necessary and appropriate in the event it considers that there is a breach or threatened breach of the Terms.

Mondaq’s Rights and Obligations

Unless otherwise expressly set out to the contrary, nothing in these Terms shall serve to transfer from Mondaq to you, any Intellectual Property Rights owned by and/or licensed to Mondaq and all rights, title and interest in and to such Intellectual Property Rights will remain exclusively with Mondaq and/or its licensors.

Mondaq shall use its reasonable endeavours to make the Website and Services available to you at all times, but we cannot guarantee an uninterrupted and fault free service.

Mondaq reserves the right to make changes to the services and/or the Website or part thereof, from time to time, and we may add, remove, modify and/or vary any elements of features and functionalities of the Website or the services.

Mondaq also reserves the right from time to time to monitor your Use of the Website and/or services.


The Content is general information only. It is not intended to constitute legal advice or seek to be the complete and comprehensive statement of the law, nor is it intended to address your specific requirements or provide advice on which reliance should be placed. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the Content for any purpose. All Content provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers hereby exclude and disclaim all representations, warranties or guarantees with regard to the Content, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. To the maximum extent permitted by law, Mondaq expressly excludes all representations, warranties, obligations, and liabilities arising out of or in connection with all Content. In no event shall Mondaq and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use of the Content or performance of Mondaq’s Services.


Mondaq may alter or amend these Terms by amending them on the Website. By continuing to Use the Services and/or the Website after such amendment, you will be deemed to have accepted any amendment to these Terms.

These Terms shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of England and Wales and you irrevocably submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England and Wales to settle any dispute which may arise out of or in connection with these Terms. If you live outside the United Kingdom, English law shall apply only to the extent that English law shall not deprive you of any legal protection accorded in accordance with the law of the place where you are habitually resident ("Local Law"). In the event English law deprives you of any legal protection which is accorded to you under Local Law, then these terms shall be governed by Local Law and any dispute or claim arising out of or in connection with these Terms shall be subject to the non-exclusive jurisdiction of the courts where you are habitually resident.

You may print and keep a copy of these Terms, which form the entire agreement between you and Mondaq and supersede any other communications or advertising in respect of the Service and/or the Website.

No delay in exercising or non-exercise by you and/or Mondaq of any of its rights under or in connection with these Terms shall operate as a waiver or release of each of your or Mondaq’s right. Rather, any such waiver or release must be specifically granted in writing signed by the party granting it.

If any part of these Terms is held unenforceable, that part shall be enforced to the maximum extent permissible so as to give effect to the intent of the parties, and the Terms shall continue in full force and effect.

Mondaq shall not incur any liability to you on account of any loss or damage resulting from any delay or failure to perform all or any part of these Terms if such delay or failure is caused, in whole or in part, by events, occurrences, or causes beyond the control of Mondaq. Such events, occurrences or causes will include, without limitation, acts of God, strikes, lockouts, server and network failure, riots, acts of war, earthquakes, fire and explosions.

By clicking Register you state you have read and agree to our Terms and Conditions