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Ontario Connecting Up to 34,000 People to Primary Care Teams in Simcoe, Bruce and York Regions

From Left to Right: Paul Markle - Executive Director of the Barrie Chamber of Commerce, Attorney General Doug Downey, Health Minister Sylvia Jones, Minister of the Environment, Conservation and Parks Andrea Khanjin
From Left to Right: Paul Markle - Executive Director of the Barrie Chamber of Commerce, Attorney General Doug Downey, Health Minister Sylvia Jones, Minister of the Environment, Conservation and Parks Andrea Khanjin

The Barrie Chamber of Commerce proudly supports our local business community. Today we attended a meet and greet hosted by the PC riding association, featuring Health Minister Sylvia Jones, along with Attorney General Doug Downey, Environment Minister Andrea Khanjin, and our Executive Director, Paul Markle. This event followed Minister Jones's announcement about significant new funding and provided a chance to discuss local health initiatives. Notable attendees included Gail Hunt, CEO of RVH; Pamela Dunn, Chair of the RVH Foundation; Mayor Randy Greenlaw of Oro; and Barrie Mayor Alex Nuttall. This gathering underscores our role in fostering discussions that benefit Barrie's health sector and business environment. #BarrieChamber #BusinessAdvocacy

March 22, 2024
Ministry of Health

BARRIE — The Ontario government is investing more than $9.8 million to connect up to 34,000 people to primary care teams in Simcoe, Bruce and York Regions. This is part of Ontario’s $110 million investment to connect up to 328,000 people across the province to primary care teams, bringing the province one step closer to connecting everyone in Ontario to primary care.

“Our government is making record investments to ensure that everyone that wants to have a primary care provider can connect to one,” said Sylvia Jones, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health. “While there is more work to do, giving tens of thousands of more Ontarians in the region the opportunity to connect to primary care brings us that much closer to this goal.”

Ontario currently leads the country with 90 per cent of people connected to a regular health care provider. As a next step to close the gap for the people not connected to primary care in the region, the province is supporting 10 new or expanded interprofessional primary care teams in Simcoe, Bruce and York regions to connect up to 34,000 Ontarians with primary care teams and provide services including:

  • Creating an Indigenous primary care team to serve the community in Barrie, including a mobile clinic.
  • Connecting those without a primary care provider to a Nurse Practitioner-Led Clinic in Innisfil.
  • Expanded access to primary care and mental health services for people in Huntsville.
  • Establishing two satellite clinics serving vulnerable populations in Couchiching, Orillia and the North Simcoe area.
  • Establishing a clinic in Collingwood to connect patients to primary care, including marginalized patients and those needing mental health and addictions supports.
  • Establishing a new Indigenous primary care team to serve patients in the Saugeen First Nation.
  • Creating a new Nurse Practitioner-Led Clinic in Owen Sound.
  • Connecting patients to primary care and allied health services via a mobile clinic in the Bruce peninsula.
  • Establishing a clinic to provide primary care and social services to those experiencing homelessness in northern York Region.

Interprofessional primary care teams connect people to a range of health professionals that work together under one roof, including doctors, nurse practitioners, registered and practical nurses, physiotherapists, social workers and dietitians, among others. Timely access to primary care helps people stay healthier for longer with faster diagnosis and treatment, as well as more consistent support managing their day-to-day health while relieving pressures on emergency departments and walk-in clinics.

The record investment of $90 million will add over 400 new primary care providers and 78 new and expanded interprofessional primary care teams across the province. In addition to other historic investments to expand medical school spots and efforts to break down barriers so highly-skilled internationally-trained doctors can care for people in Ontario, Ministry of Health modelling shows that these initiatives will help connect up to 98 per cent of people in Ontario to primary care in the next several years.

An additional $20 million will provide a boost to all existing interprofessional primary care teams to help them meet increased operational costs for their facilities and supplies so that they continue to provide high-quality care to the people they provide care to.

Since the launch of Your Health: A Plan for Connected and Convenient Care one year ago, the government has been making steady progress to ensure the health care system has become better equipped to respond to the needs of patients and provide them with the right care in the right place, faster access to services and access to an expanded health care workforce.


Quick Facts


  • Ontario’s investment of $90 million dollars triples the original $30 million dollars earmarked to expand interprofessional primary care teams and will deliver over four times as many initiatives as outlined in our Your Health Plan almost a year ago.
  • Ontario is the first province to have a publicly funded Nurse Practitioner-Led Clinic program. This is in addition to the new Practice Ready Ontario Program that will add 50 new physicians this year.
  • The new and expanded teams are the result of a province-wide call for proposals that took place in 2023. All proposals were thoroughly reviewed by Ontario Health based on criteria prioritizing areas of greatest need, to connect a greater number of people currently without a regular primary care provider with these services closer to home.
  • Ontario leads the country in how many people benefit from a long-term, stable relationship with a family doctor or primary care provider. Since 2018 the province has added over 80,000 new nurses and 12,500 new physicians to the health care system.
  • Ontario invests over $1 billion in interprofessional primary care teams annually.




"Our government is making record investments to ensure that the residents in Barrie and Innisfil that want to have a primary care provider can connect to one. I am thrilled that Innisfil will be receiving $1,440,600 for a Nurse Practitioner Led Clinic which will be working with existing community partners including pharmacies, Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit, radiology centres, CMHA, BANAC, and other community service partners to provide comprehensive primary care services to the unattached, patients with chronic diseases, those with mental health or addiction issues, the elderly, young families, socioeconomically disadvantaged groups, indigenous persons, racialized or francophone communities."

- Andrea Khanjin
MPP for Barrie – Innisfil

"This funding continues to ensure that everyone, no matter where they live, will have access to the world class healthcare Ontarians expect. Expanding access to primary care teams helps connect patients and their families with the services they need all at once. These primary care teams will help keep families together, and relieve pressures on both the healthcare system and the stresses of patients accessing care."

- Doug Downey
MPP for Barrie – Springwater – Oro-Medonte

"We are extremely happy to receive these primary care investments that will provide increased access to healthcare for thousands of our residents. In Bruce – Grey – Owen Sound, this funding will help provide primary care services for approximately 4,000 unattached patients in Durham, Markdale, Meaford, Owen Sound, Saugeen Shores and Wiarton."

- Rick Byers
MPP for Bruce – Grey – Owen Sound

"Our government is taking decisive action to improve access to primary care in Parry Sound-Muskoka. Our communities are receiving $1.26M in new funding to strengthen local health teams. This means more doctors and nurses and better health outcomes for residents. Small towns and rural Ontario are no longer an afterthought at Queen's Park."

- Graydon Smith
MPP for Parry Sound – Muskoka

"With the rapid population growth we've seen in Simcoe-Grey over the last few years, access to primary care is an issue I hear about often from constituents. I am very happy we've received more than $879,000 from the Ministry of Health. This investment will provide 3,400 people, who are currently considered unattached patients, with access to medical professionals. This funding will also allow the South Georgian Bay Ontario Health Team to work with primary care partners including the South Georgian Bay Community Health Centre and the Georgian Bay Family Health Team to support unattached patients from Collingwood, Clearview, Wasaga Beach and the Town of the Blue Mountains."

- Brian Saunderson
MPP for Simcoe – Grey

"This important investment will help connect more residents in Northern York Simcoe to a primary care provider. By expanding multidisciplinary teams who work together to assess, plan and coordinate people’s care, our government is helping ensure better health outcomes for our community members."

- Dawn Gallagher Murphy
MPP for Newmarket – Aurora

"I am immensely proud to extend my sincere congratulations to the health care teams of both Couchiching and North Simcoe for securing this substantial funding, a testament to their unwavering commitment to community health. This significant investment will undoubtedly bolster efforts in providing timely access to care, improving the well-being of countless individuals within our communities. The dedication and passion of both teams serve as an inspiring example of collaborative excellence in healthcare delivery."

- Jill Dunlop
MPP Simcoe North

"This significant investment is exactly what the residents of Keswick and Georgina need. Access to primary healthcare will be closer to home. This is a critical step towards improving healthcare access for everyone in York-Simcoe and across the province."

- Caroline Mulroney
MPP for York – Simcoe

Additional Resources



Media Contacts


Hannah Jensen
Minister Jones’ Office

Anna Miller
Communications Branch

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