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Shift the Conversation: Community Health and Wellbeing

When: June 2, 2015
Time: 8:00 am
Where: Sheraton Parkway Toronto North Hotel

Shift the Conversation: Community Health and Wellbeing
A primary health care conference to promote the best possible health and wellbeing for everyone in Ontario

June 2 & 3, 2015
Sheraton Parkway Toronto North, 600 HWY-7 E | Richmond Hill, Ontario

The Association of Ontario Health Centres is calling for proposals for learning sessions at its annual primary health care conference in June.

The conference will focus on the shifts required to create an integrated community health and wellbeing system that:

  • Improves population health by placing a strong focus on upstream interventions that promote health and prevent illness
  • Prioritizes health equity and reduces  health disparities
  • Provides high quality, people and community centred services; and
  • Delivers value for money and contributes to health system sustainability.

A wide range of delegates will be in attendance:

  • Board members of primary health care organizations
  • Senior leadership of primary health care organizations, including clinical and program directors
  • Representatives from other parts of the health care system across the continuum of care
  • Multi-sectoral representatives from institutions and organizations focused on developing and delivering services, programs and policies to improve health and wellbeing
  • Representatives from LHINs and Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
  • Researchers, opinion-leaders and  media tracking and monitoring Ontario’s health system transformation

You are invited to submit a proposal related to one of our SIX conference themes:  

Theme One: System-Wide Integration
Working better together to create more integrated health and social services systems.

Theme Two: Working Upstream
Healthier public policy and upstream interventions that prevent illness, promote health and create a culture of wellbeing.

Theme Three: Primary Health Care at the Foundation
Building a stronger foundation for the delivery of primary health care.

Theme Four: Breaking Down Barriers
Improving services and supports for people with barriers with an emphasis on best practice models to support people with mental health and addiction issues.

Theme Five: Clinical Leadership and Quality Improvement
Strengthening leadership for quality improvement with a focus on clinical best practices.

Theme Six: Maximizing Community Governance
Enhancing the leadership role of governance in health system transformation.

We are especially interested in learning proposals that demonstrate results achieved and evidence informed practices.

Recommended Topics for Learning Sessions

These are the recommended topics, however, other related topics that fit any of the six conference themes will be considered:

  1. Planning access to primary health care using a health equity and population needs-based approach.
  2. Increasing access to health and wellbeing for equity seeking groups, for example:

2.1  Racialized populations
2.2  Aboriginal populations
2.3  Francophone populations
2.4  Newcomer and refugee populations
2.5  LGBT populations
2.6  Those living with mental health and addiction issues
2.7  Those living on low incomes
2.8  Homeless or housing insecure
2.9  Non-insured populations

3.  Cultivating client and/or member engagement
4.  Active roles and advancements with Health Links
5.  Successful strategies for primary care to reduce avoidable hospital visits
6.  Maximizing meaningful use of electronic medical records
7.  Full scope interprofessional teams
8.  Advances in care coordination & system navigation
9.   Broadening viewpoints on different ways of being and knowing.  For example cultural safety and Aboriginal perspectives on wholistic health and healing.
10. Evidence-based  people and community-centred services, programs and community initiatives
11. Improving primary health care access, experience and efficiency
12.  Strategic planning that enhances the Model of Health and Wellbeing
13.  Intentional use of the Canadian Index of Wellbeing framework and Model of Health and Wellbeing for:

13.1  understanding and improving client and community wellbeing;
13.2  community engagement for health and wellbeing planning;
13.3  cross-sectorial partnerships for collective impact;
13.4  collaborative governance;
13.5  planning and implementing community initiatives;
13.6  communication, advocacy and policy change.

Formats for Learning Sessions

A learning session is up to a maximum of 60 minutes in length and should be best suited and developed based on the specific session format. Each learning session is followed by a 15 minute open time to exchange ideas for those interested to stay in the room. This is time to ask the presenters further questions, network and continue conversations with each other.

The following descriptions of the learning session formats include what the participants could experience when attending the session at the conference:

  • Evidence-Based Stories
  • Skill-Building or Demonstration Workshops
  • Network Building Sessions
  • Rapid Think Tank Sessions
  • 10 Minute Spotlight Presentations

Evidence-Based Stories:  A presentation, usually by a single practitioner, 30 – 40 minutes in length to speak about an effective approach, applied research initiative or an innovative practice, followed by audience questions and conversations (15-20 minutes).

Skill-Building or Demonstration Workshops: A 60 minute session. Skill-building workshops should teach a specific skill needed by many centre staff and include one or more exercises that let participants practice using this skill. Demonstration workshops can show a successful practice and should also include an engaging interactive component where participants can explore how they might implement such a practice in their own context.

Network Building Sessions: A relatively small and informal 60-minute session that is conversation-based and aimed at building relationships and exploring shared interests and opportunities. There is no formal presentation instead the session leader(s) ensures that there is time for introductions or paired interviews among those in attendance and comes with specific questions or ideas to spark conversations around a particular topic area or role.

Rapid Think Tank Sessions: A think tank is a 60-minute session focusing on a single issue or question. Initially, the presenter will orient participants to the issue or question proposed and the relevant context (10 minutes). Then, participants break into small groups to explore the issue or question and finally reconvene to share their understanding through a participatory dialogue that is facilitated by the presenter.

10 Minute Spotlight Presentations: A spotlight session is a 10-minute presentation made by a single presenter only, followed by 5-minutes of audience questions. The format is an ideal opportunity to shine a light on new evidence, partnerships or innovative ideas. These spotlight presentations are high-energy and fast-paced. This presentation style will require presenters to practice their timing in advance and will contribute to the action-oriented nature of this conference. In a 60 minute session there will be 4 separate yet similarly themed spotlight presentations.

Submission Guidelines

To submit a learning proposal please click here[external link].

The deadline to submit a proposal is Monday, January 19th, 2015.

If your proposal is accepted you will be informed by the beginning of February 2015.

Terms and Conditions:   

Notification of acceptance:

All proposals submitted will be acknowledged with a confirmation number.

All proposals accepted will be notified before the end of January, 2015. When your proposal is accepted you will be invited to participate in an orientation session.

The conference program will include sessions from both the call for proposals and from invited speakers relevant to the conference themes and topics. In the interest of achieving diversity and balance in the conference program and dealing with time and space constraints, the Conference Working group may suggest changing the session format or combining similar sessions into one.

Logistics and Technical Requirements:

  • An LCD projector, screen and podium are provided in all session meeting rooms if required.
  • Rooms will be set in rounds unless otherwise requested. Please identify any additional requirements you may have on the learning session proposal form.
  • Presentations should be provided to AOHC no later than Friday, May 22, 2015.

Registration fees for presenters:

We are pleased to offer the following discounted rate on conference registration fees for learning session presenters:

  • AOHC will provide a discount of $150 off the full registration for up to two (2) presenters of a session.  Any additional presenters are required to pay a full registration fee and will not be able to be included in the printed program.
  • If you are presenting and attending 1 day only, AOHC is pleased to offer $75 off the one-day registration fee for up to two (2) presenters of a session.

If accepted, it is understood that the presenter(s) agree to complete and submit an online conference registration form, pay the appropriate conference registration fee, and make the presentation as scheduled. The presenter(s) may then participate in all other conference events relevant to that registration.

Presenters are responsible for all expenses related to attending the conference, including travel, accommodation and printing of handouts.


An application is being made for continuing medical education credits for family physicians in attendance at this conference. Conflict of interest disclosure is an accreditation requirement for all presenters and planning committee members

* Within the learning session proposal submittal form you will be required to complete a conflict of interest disclosure form and declare all conflicts (or lack thereof).


  • For questions related to the terms, conditions, and logistics please contact John Boggan, john.boggan@aohc.org
  • For questions related to the session and conference guidelines, please contact Heidi Schaeffer, Knowledge and Learning Lead,  Heidi@aohc.org

This form is available in English only due to technical limitations. You can enter the fields in French. For translation of the categories in French, please click here to view a PDF copy.[external link]