Walpole Island Embraces C-K CHCs
June 4, 2012: A day of celebration for the Chatham-Kent Community Health Centres (“C-K CHCs”) and its supportive ally, the Walpole Island First Nation (“WIFN”) community.
The C-K CHCs officially showcased their Walpole Island satellite office, located within the Thunderbird Plaza. Opened January 9, 2012, the satellite office was a response to the increasing need of primary care services within the WIFN community. Its journey, led by its triad of conductors (the C-K CHCs, the Erie St. Clair LHIN and the WIFN community), emerged from humble beginnings.
In 2009, during the C-K CHCs pre-operational planning, it was determined that the Wallaceburg satellite office would provide outreach health care services on Walpole Island. Spaces were sought out to provide these services which directed the C-K CHCs towards a partnership with the Walpole Island First Nation Health Centre (“WIFN Health Centre”). In August of 2010, the staff of the Wallaceburg satellite office stationed themselves within the WIFN Health Centre and offered primary care services one day a week.
In 2011, discussions were initiated surrounding the expansion and accessibility of the C-K CHCs primary care services. In order to provide adequate services, the C-K CHCs consulted with the WIFN community and the Erie St. Clair LHIN in regards to establishing a full-fledge satellite office. The Erie St. Clair LHIN had previously predicated their endorsement for a full-service CHC on Walpole Island. After consultation with these parties, funding and site approval ensued. As staff of the C-K CHCs migrated to their new site, it was realized that additional staff would be required in order to effectively service the WIFN community as they were utilizing staff from their current roster.
Once again, the C-K CHCs carefully deliberated with the WIFN community to ensure that their health care services were reflective of the community’s needs. Input was also imparted by the Erie St. Clair LHIN. Following these discussions, a proposal was drafted and submitted to the Erie St. Clair LHIN requesting additional staff.
The C-K CHCs were granted funding for three additional staff members for Walpole Island. This came at an opportune time for the Open House which directs us back to the present.
What began with the WIFN community opening their doors to the C-K CHCs, now continues with the C-K CHCs opening their doors to the community and to a flourishing future of health care!
CHC’s strive to correct the separation of primary clinical care from other social service and community development activities using a holistic approach to wellbeing.
C-K CHCs have benefited from the feedback of the Walpole Island Health Committee, Walpole Island Community Engagement Committee and Chief & Band Council to ensure that the health care provided on Walpole Island meets the needs of the residents.