The Health Unit and the Ontario College of Family Physicians offered the half-day workshop to help family doctors:
- Explore a simple three-step, primary-care approach to helping patients living in poverty;
- Develop an understanding of the provincial and federal income-security systems, including benefits for children, working-age adults, people with disabilities, and seniors;
- Learn about three user-friendly, web-based resources to navigate income-support systems in clinical practice, and become familiar with one, Canada Benefits;
- Explore and critique the Ontario Disability Support Program in depth;
- Consider ethical challenges that arise in helping patients navigate the income-security system.
Poverty can only be reduced through “a comprehensive, community-wide approach,” said Zbar, including more affordable housing, and mental-health and income-support programs, and educating healthcare providers to help their patients access existing programs.