Ontario’s health care system can feel like a maze. The system has become so complex that even people who work in it every day often struggle to navigate it. So for members of the public – who often encounter the system at a time of crisis – it can be hopelessly confusing and frustrating.
In response, some hospitals have introduced patient navigators, who act as guides through the labyrinth of health care services. They help connect patients with the right doctors, access available resources and therapies, improve continuity of care and get answers to patients’ questions about their diagnoses.
Of course, many patients have the same questions and find themselves facing the same challenges in navigating the system. In response, Lisa Priest, who was manager of community engagement and patient navigation at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, launched the Personal Health Navigator blog, hosted on Healthy Debate, in 2012. Paul Taylor took over the Personal Health Navigator when he joined Sunnybrook in 2013.
Over the past few years, Lisa and Paul have answered nearly 100 patient questions, and their answers have been viewed over 37,000 times.
We believe the Personal Health Navigator is an important resource for Ontarians. In collaboration with Healthy Debate’s Citizens’ Advisory Council, we have selected 33 articles for this e-book that span a variety of topics, from family doctors to cancer and surgery.
We hope you find this collection interesting and useful. This e-book is provided free of charge, so please feel free to share it with friends, family and co-workers (we are required by Amazon to charge $0.99 plus tax for the Kindle version of this e-book – proceeds will be donated to the St. Michael’s Foundation in support of Healthy Debate).
If you have questions about your doctor, your hospital or how to navigate the health care system, please send them to AskPaul@Sunnybrook.ca.
Download the e-book as a PDF by clicking on the image below:
You can always find our e-book (along with our health system primers for board members) on the new Publications section of our website.