Virtual Urgent Care Funding

The Ministry of Health is investing up to $3.6 million to support regionally coordinated virtual urgent care initiatives with demonstrated patient demand as part of Ontario’s COVID-19 pandemic response.

Ontario Health is inviting proposals for one-time funding for the following:

  • Proposals to extend and adapt existing programs with demonstrated implementation success up to March 31, 2022
  • Proposals for a limited number of new virtual urgent care initiatives that align with the funding objectives and requirements below

On this page

  1. Who can apply for funding
  2. Funding objectives
  3. Project requirements
  4. Funding guidelines
  5. Proposal guidelines
  6. Supporting resources

If your OHT is interested in submitting a proposal to access Virtual Urgent Care Program Funding, please review all criteria in the 2022-23 Funding Criteria document.

 

Who can apply for funding

Who can apply for funding

  • Organizations that are members of an approved Ontario Health Team (OHT)
  • Organizations that are members of In Development Teams
  • All other health care providers and organizations who are not yet part of an approved OHT may submit a proposal that aligns with the program requirements outlined in the 2022-23 Funding Criteria document
  • Indigenous community organizations, including those serving First Nations, Inuit, Metis and Urban Indigenous persons
Funding Objectives

Funding objectives

The objectives of this funding include:

  • Enabling patients to access urgent care virtually for appropriate lower acuity health concerns within a specific time period to avoid unnecessary in-person emergency department (ED) visits
  • Facilitating in-person ED visits or transfers for urgent health issues
  • Supporting collaboration between emergency departments, primary care, long-term care (LTC), retirement homes, and other community partners to enhance continuity of care

Ontario Health invites proposals that involve innovative uses of digital tools to support patient navigation, ensure patients receive the appropriate level of care, and support collaboration between primary care, LTC, and emergency department team members within an OHT or across a region.

 

If your OHT is interested in submitting a proposal to access Virtual Urgent Care Program Funding, please review all criteria in the 2022-23 Funding Criteria document.

 

 

Project Requirements

Project requirements

All successful proposals must:

  • Be led by a region, or one or more OHTs or health service provider organizations with the capacity to provide cost-effective virtual urgent care services across regional or OHT catchment areas. See guidelines below for OHT proposals
  • Propose a sustainable operating model with significant in-kind resourcing support that is appropriate for anticipated patient volumes
  • Agree to provide virtual urgent care services providing minimum daily operating hours up to March 31, 2022
  • Demonstrate how the program is designed and governed with input from patients and include mechanisms to measure the patient experience
  • Demonstrate how clinical workflows have been designed to support patients facing barriers to access virtual health care services (e.g., limited access technology or bandwidth, digital literacy, or lack of private space) to support video visits
  • Agree to deliver services that are consistent with the clinical model outlined in Section 4, including patient screening, access to an appropriate and secure video visit within a reasonable window of time, and facilitating an in-person visit or transfer to an emergency department where necessary
  • Commit to participating in an evaluation aimed at assessing options for a sustainable regionally coordinated operating model
  • Be led by an OHT or health service provider organization who agrees to signing a funding agreement with Ontario Health that would include performance targets and monthly reporting requirements
  • Be submitted and endorsed by the Ontario Health Regional Digital Lead
Funding guidelines

Funding guidelines

All proposals must include in-kind resources and a detailed funding request for a specific operating period up to March 31, 2022. The funding request can include the following eligible expenses:

  • Operational costs (i.e., nursing resources, registration clerks, IT licenses)
  • Communication costs (i.e., web development, social media)
  • One-time IT infrastructure costs. Requests for infrastructure investments must be supported by a sustainability plan

Regional Digital Leads can provide more information about the funding parameters.

Proposal Guidelines

Proposal guidelines

OHT proposals must demonstrate one or more of the following criteria:

  • The proposal was developed by the OHT according to processes outlined in their Collective Decision-Making Arrangement(s) and submitted with the OHT as signatory (e.g., leadership council)
  • The proposal aligns with OHT priorities and OHT-specific performance indicators
  • The proposed program involves an active collaboration between OHT members
  • Funds will be flowed to and managed by a fundholder nominated by the OHT on behalf of all beneficiary OHT members
  • The proposal aligns with Ministry direction to In Development teams (if applicable)

Health care organizations are encouraged to collaborate on a multi-OHT or regional proposal.

Supporting Resources

Supporting resources

Please review the following documents before completing and submitting a funding proposal:

If you have any questions or need more information about this funding program stream or the application process, please contact virtualcareproposals@ontariohealth.ca.

Last Updated: June 16, 2022