Knowing Your Health Care Options Is Crucial In Avoiding Trips To The Emergency Department This Seaso

Published Monday, December 16, 2019

Knowing Your Health Care Options Is Crucial In Avoiding Trips To The Emergency Department This Seaso

For more information about health services and more, visit the North West LHIN website.

Submitted by the North West Local Health Integration Network

The winter season brings increased demand for health services along with holiday closures between Christmas and New Year's. Influenza and seasonal injuries such as fractures drive this surge, leading to longer than usual wait times for those who don't require immediate emergency care. Knowing where to go for care is vital this time of year, especially with the early start to the flu season, which may leave hospitals at, or over, capacity.

"It is important to know where to access information about health care services, especially during the holidays as Emergency Departments operate at full capacity," says Dr. Rhonda Crocker Ellacott, Chief Executive Officer, North West Local Health Integration Network (LHIN). "Be prepared this holiday season by taking steps to stay healthy and know your options if you get sick."

Simple actions like getting a free flu shot, ensuring that you have all your prescriptions refilled before the holidays, and washing your hands often can help you stay healthy. More tips are available at

The website is a trusted and comprehensive source of health and community services right at your fingertips.

Easy-to-access information on non-emergency medical services

The LHIN encourages members of the public to access when they are looking for help with non-emergency medical issues over the holidays.

The website is a free, comprehensive on-line resource featuring up-to-date information on services available for non-emergency medical needs across communities in Northwestern Ontario.

  • Flu vaccinations are free and available from your local health care provider or pharmacist. For information, visit
  • To talk to a registered nurse 24-hours a day, seven days a week, contact Telehealth Ontario at 1-866-797-0000.
  • Health Care Connect helps people without a doctor find one. Call 1-800-445-1822 for more information.
  • For more information about these services and more, visit the North West LHIN website.


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