Approximately 2.2 million Ontarians do not have a family physician. Escalating workforce shortages due to fewer graduates choosing family medicine, an aging workforce, and earlier retirement may cause an increase in the number of unattached patients to 3 million by 2025.
Although initiatives aimed at reducing administrative work for providers are important to support expanded access, access can also be measured at the practice level. The change ideas below present the fundamental principles of understanding patient panels, measuring supply and demand, and other examples of streamlining clinic workflows to expand capacity.
This indicator is intended to measure the net new number of patients/clients/enrolment, accounting for both patients that have left the practice, as well as newly added or enrolled patients.
The College of Family Physicians of Canada’s Best Advice Guide: Panel Size provides guidance on factors affecting practice panel size
Information on the number of new clients for Alliance for Healthier Communities (AHC) community health centres can be found on page 25 of the AHC panel size handbook