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Healthcare Change Makers

Nov 23, 2020

For this special series we’re partnering with the Association of Family Health Teams of Ontario (AFHTO) to highlight the work of several amazing primary healthcare teams.

Family health teams provide comprehensive primary care and are based on a collaborative model where physicians, nurse practitioners, nurses, dieticians, social workers and many more disciplines work together.

In this episode we speak with Janet Dang, Transformation Lead for Primary Care at the Thames Valley Family Health Team, part of the London Middlesex Primary Care Alliance, and Asher Frydman, a 2nd year medical student at the Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry at Western University. Asher was one of the early volunteers to join Janet’s Covid project.

In the early stages of Covid-19, Janet and her team realized the area was experiencing a severe shortage of PPE. With the help of student volunteers and donations from businesses and the community, this grassroots effort grew to become the primary PPE distribution hub for the provincial supply within the region.


“I saw that there was a small project that was at its grassroots stage, collecting PPE from the community and I said this is absolutely I want to do.” – AF

“We started to call a couple of places and more PPE came in and things were being picked up, and it started to snowball. We thought, oh no, there’s only the three of us. We can’t really do this for the entire city!” – JA


“The actual cycle of making sure you’re tracking all of it, making sure they’re getting the exact amounts they need – no more no less – that really took a lot of cycles, discussing with each other and individuals who work higher up like Janet as well as some other doctors, to make sure we were working efficiently as well as ethically.” – AF


“The (AFHTO) conference gave us a chance to explain there are hub systems that can really work, and that can actually make a difference in your communities, that can maintain close relationships with physicians and other primary care providers to ensure they can continue their operations during a pandemic such as Covid.” – AF


“It was incredible to see how both the community can step up to help healthcare workers and how future healthcare workers are willing to step up as well to make sure we have that continuity of care.” – AF


“It just shows that when we communicate and work together in a way to provide support in a time of need, it just was truly grassroots and so organic, it was something very special to be a part of.” – JA


Mentioned in this Episode:

AFHTO Association of Family Health Teams of Ontario

Thames Valley Family Health Team

Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry


Fanshawe College


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