Ontario Investing Over $1.26M Into Primary Care Teams in Huntsville, Burk’s Falls, Sundridge and Wasauksing First Nation

Funding To Support Approximately 5,000 Unattached Patients


February 16, 2024  

Burk’s Falls— The Ontario government is investing $1,264,686 to connect more people to interprofessional primary care teams across Parry Sound-Muskoka. This is part of Ontario’s $110 million investment to connect up to 328,000 people to primary care teams, bringing the province one step closer to connecting everyone in Ontario to primary care.

  • The Algonquin Family Health Team will be receiving $559,799, which will connect over 1,200 patients to primary care in the Huntsville and Dorset areas.
  • Sundridge and District Medical Centre will be receiving $327,237, which will connect approximately 1,200 unattached patients to primary care. 
  • Burk’s Falls Family Health Team will be receiving $290,000, connecting approximately 2,200 patients to primary care. 
  • Wasauksing First Nation is receiving $87,650, connecting approximately 400 patients to primary care.

“This investment of over $1.2M in new funding by the Government of Ontario will significantly grow our primary care capacity in Parry Sound-Muskoka and serve approximately 5,000 residents in our community,” said MPP Graydon Smith, Parry Sound-Muskoka. “This investment will help more people get faster access to a doctor, nurse practitioner and many other types of health professionals.”

Ontario currently leads the country with 90 percent of people connected to a regular health care provider. As a next step to close the gap for people not connected to primary care in the community, the province is supporting the expansion of interprofessional primary care teams in Parry Sound-Muskoka.

Interprofessional primary care teams connect people to a range of health professionals that work together under one roof, including doctors, nurse practitioners, registered and practical nurses, physiotherapists, social workers and dietitians, among others. Timely access to primary care helps people stay healthier for longer with faster diagnosis and treatment, as well as more consistent support managing their day-to-day health while relieving pressures on emergency departments and walk-in clinics.

“Our government is making record investments to ensure that everyone that wants to have a primary care provider can connect to one,” said Sylvia Jones, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health. “While there is more work to do, giving hundreds of thousands of more Ontarians the opportunity to connect to primary care brings us that much closer to this goal.”

In addition to other historic investments to expand medical school spots and efforts to break down barriers so highly-skilled internationally-trained doctors can care for people in Ontario, Ministry of Health modeling shows that these initiatives will help connect up to 98 percent of people in Ontario to primary care in the next several years.

Since the launch of Your Health: A Plan for Connected and Convenient Care one year ago, the government has been making steady progress to ensure the health care system has become better equipped to respond to the needs of patients and provide them with the right care in the right place, faster access to services and access to an expanded health care workforce.


  • As a next step to close the gap for the 1.3 million people not connected to primary care in the province, the government is making a record investment of $90 million to add over 400 new primary care providers as part of 78 new and expanded interprofessional primary care teams. The new and expanded teams will include Family Health Teams, Nurse Practitioner-Led Clinics, Community Health Centres and Indigenous Primary Health Care Organizations.
  • The new and expanded teams are the result of a province-wide call for proposals that took place in 2023. All proposals were thoroughly reviewed by Ontario Health based on criteria prioritising areas of greatest need, to connect a greater number of people currently without a regular primary care provider with these services closer to home.
  • Ontario is the first province to have a publicly funded Nurse Practitioner-Led Clinic program. This is in addition to the new Practice Ready Ontario Program that will add 50 new physicians this year.
  • Ontario leads the country in how many people benefit from a long-term, stable relationship with a family doctor or primary care provider. Since 2018 the province has added over 80,000 new nurses and 10,300 new physicians to the health care system.
  • Ontario invests over $1 billion in interprofessional primary care teams annually.


“I would like to thank the Province of Ontario and MPP Graydon Smith for this great news on behalf of the residents of Huntsville. Today’s news recognizes the value of community partnerships and the hard work we are doing to expand primary care in clinics such as ours. The Town of Huntsville is looking forward to our continued collaboration to bring health care to vulnerable and marginalized people as well as anyone who needs comprehensive care.” 

– Mayor Nancy Alcock, Town of Huntsville

“On behalf of the Burk’s Falls Family Health Team and the Almaguin Highlands Health Council, we are thrilled with the announcement of primary care funding for our teams in both Burk’s Falls and Sundridge. We wish to thank the Ministry of Health, Minister of Health Sylvia Jones, and our MPP Graydon Smith for making this a reality. This announcement is good news for the entire Almaguin Highlands, as it provides potential real healthcare benefits to residents across 10 municipalities. The key message is the collaboration and cooperation that made this possible.  The fact that the Burk’s Falls Family Health Team worked so closely with the Sundridge & District Medical Team to ensure they had a coordinated approach speaks volumes about the teamwork here in the Almaguin Highlands. With background support from AHHC, all 10 municipalities, and the Muskoka and Area Ontario Health Team, this additional funding means something tangible to our citizens. It is a game-changer! We truly believe that this investment will pay back huge dividends now and into the future.”

– Rod Ward, Mayor, Township of Armour , Co-Chair of BFFHT Board of Directors, Chair, Almaguin Highlands Health Council

“This significant financial support not only empowers us to expand the Huntsville Health Care Clinic, but also strengthens our community partnerships. I want to thank MPP Graydon Smith and Minister of Health, Sylvia Jones, for prioritizing the well-being of our communities. Together, we are working towards a more responsive, inclusive, and comprehensive healthcare system.” 

– Janine van den Heuvel, ED/CEO, Algonquin Family Health Team 

“We are proud to be expanding the unattached patient clinic in Huntsville to better care for people without access to a primary care provider.  I want to thank all of our partners for their work done to date and congratulate everyone as we work together to improve access to primary care.  Primary care is the centre of our health care system, and we are excited to provide coordinated, integrated care to our community in an accessible and equitable way. 

– Dr. Melanie Mar, Family Physician, AFHT Lead Physician and Board Chair

“We are thrilled with the recent investment announcement made by the Ontario Government, which represents a significant step forward in improving access to primary healthcare services in Ontario. This investment directly impacts our community, particularly with today’s funding announcement for Burk’s Falls Family Health Team and Sundridge & District Medical Centre. This financial investment will help connect more patients to primary care, and provide better access to primary care services.”

– Dr. Keith Cross and Jodi Phillips, Co-Chairs of the Muskoka & Area On