main hospital building at night


New Name for Ontario Health Team Located in Eastern Ontario


Following several weeks of engagement with stakeholders and partners, the Upper Canada, Cornwall and Area Ontario Health Team has a new name: Great River Ontario Health Team (OHT).

Ontario Health Teams are being formed across the province by the Government of Ontario and are supported by funding provided by the Ontario Ministry of Health. The intent is that Ontario Health Teams will provide better integrated care by breaking down barriers that may exist between healthcare providers and geographic areas.

Great River OHT covers the United Counties of Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry, City of Cornwall, Akwesasne, and also parts of Russell Township and rural south-east Ottawa. Its membership is made up of more than 30 healthcare providers from across these regions who are working together towards a common vision of more integrated and better coordinated care for patients.

The creation of Great River OHT was announced last fall with the temporary name Upper Canada, Cornwall and Area OHT, which had been assigned during the original application process until a permanent name could be selected.

“We spent the past weeks gathering feedback from local patients, healthcare providers and the community on the name for our OHT. Their feedback was that it should be inclusive and descriptive of the unique communities and geographical areas that we serve, which includes the St. Lawrence River, the Mohawk community of Akwesasne and our large Francophone population,” stated Christine Penney, Co-Chair of the Great River OHT Collaboration Council.

Based on the feedback received, OHT members chose Great River as the OHT’s new name. Great River is translated from Kaniatarowanénhne, the Mohawk place name for the St. Lawrence River.

“By choosing the name Great River, we are acknowledging that we work and practice on the traditional lands and waters of Indigenous peoples, highlighting our OHT’s commitment to reconciliation, inclusivity and moving forward, together,” adds Tracy Crowder, Co-Chair of the Great River OHT Collaboration Council.

Great River OHT is now focusing on the development of its branding and public facing communications, which includes a new logo and website, to begin raising awareness and promote community engagement. They have also established a steering committee and several working groups to help address three priority areas: mental health and addictions; frail older adults with complex care needs; and supporting and building capacity in primary care.

“We thank everyone who engaged with us during this exercise and we look forward to delivering a local patient-centred healthcare system in which partners work together to connect people with the services they need in a more structured and timely manner,” says Crowder.