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What Does That Mean?

Updated: Jan 28, 2019

Are you confused with some of the lingo you hear in hospitals, with home care, or in the health care industry in general? Allow us to help provide some clarity. Below may be a few terms you may have come across:

CCAC: acronym for Community Care Access Centre. This is the agency that manages both OHIP funded home care services and the application process to Long-Term Care (LTC)/Nursing Homes (in Ontario). So if you want to access government funded care, either at home or in a LTC/Nursing Home, you have to go through CCAC. CCAC is the only means to gain access to OHIP funded home care or gain access to a LTC/Nursing Homes.

LHIN: acronym for Local Health Integration Network. The government has divided the province of Ontario into segments (each one representing a different LHIN). There are 14 LHINs within the province. Each LHIN uses its given funding to plan and provide care to those within its local community. CCAC operates within these segments (LHINs), thus being aware of which LHIN you reside in is relevant, as it may impact which services and how much services you receive.

Acute Care: Acute care refers to when one receives brief or short-lived care/treatment for a serious or urgent health care illness/condition. This type of care is usually offered within a hospital setting.

ALC: Is an acronym for Alternative Level of Care. This is a term that is normally used in a hospital setting. It means that the physician caring for you feels you no longer need to be in the care of a hospital(acute care),as:

- you no longer require the specific care only available within a hospital

- you have recovered from your acute medical issue

-its been determined that you have reached a plateau in your care at this level of care(no further improvement anticipated in this care setting)

In other words, the physician feels it’s now an appropriate time for you to leave the hospital (acute care) and go to an alternative level of care (such as home with supports, rehab, retirement home, etc).

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