Learn About Primary Care

What Is Primary Care?
  • Primary Care is the care that patients receive from health providers they usually see first when they have a health concern. It refers to the first point of contact a patient has with the health care system – the family physician’s office.
  • A strong primary care system improves patient outcomes, reduces stress on hospital and emergency room resources, lowers health costs and creates a more accessible and sustainable health system.

What Is a Primary Care Network?
  • Primary Care Networks bring local physicians and other health professionals together to provide comprehensive patient care.
  • These strong multidisciplinary teams help PCNs provide patients who experience complex medical problems with enhanced and better coordinated care.

What Do Primary Care Networks do?
  • A Primary Care Network’s team of health professionals aim to see patients getting the right care, from the right professional, at the right time.
  • Primary Care Networks create local solutions to local health needs.
  • Primary Care Networks are working to improve care of, and prevent, chronic diseases such as diabetes and heart disease
  • Primary Care Networks improve the overall health of Albertans by promoting and supporting healthy, active lifestyles for people of all ages.
  • Primary Care Networks are improving access to care, and better coordinating primary care to advance the health of Albertans today and in the future.
  • Primary Care Networks are helping to build a healthier Alberta.
  • There are now 42 Primary Care Networks involving over 3,800 family doctors and more than 1,100 other health professional, across Alberta.
  • Together, they are serving over 2.5 million patients each year.
  • As of 2011, 79% of all eligible family physicians in Alberta are working within PCNs, with a shared goal of seeing 80 per cent of all Albertans receiving primary health care from PCN teams by the year’s end.

What Is the Chinook Primary Care Network?

The Chinook Primary Care Network is a collaboration between Southern Alberta physicians, Alberta Health Services, Alberta Health and the Alberta Medical Association.

Our Mission: to deliver exemplary evidence-based and timely patient-centered primary health care.

The Chinook Primary Care Network operates in accordance with the goals of ALL the province’s Primary Care Networks.

The Goals of Primary Care Networks
  • Increasing the proportion of Albertans with ready access to primary care.
  • Providing coordinated 24-hour, 7-day-per-week management of access to appropriate primary care services.
  • Increasing emphasis on health promotion, disease and injury prevention, care of medically complex patients and care of patients with chronic diseases.
  • Improving coordination and integration with other health care services including secondary, tertiary and long-term care, through specialty care linkages to primary care.
  • Facilitating greater use of multi-disciplinary teams to provide comprehensive primary care.

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