Canada-Yukon  bilateral agreement to improve health care services


July 2018

Today, the Government of Canada and the Government of Yukon signed a bilateral agreement outlining how the territory plans to invest approximately $5.2 million in targeted federal funding over five years to improve access to home and community care and mental health and addiction services. In 2021-22, this agreement will be renewed for the remaining five years of the 10-year commitment.

Yukon’s Action Plan aligns with the objectives and pan-Canadian priorities set out in the Common Statement of Principles on Shared Health Priorities and will be implemented through a multi-pronged approach.

Home Care and Community Care

Federal funding will be use to expand and enhance home and community care services in the territory by:

  • Enhancing community-based services to support the ability of patients to stay in their homes as long as possible, and improving navigation through the health care system
    • This will include a re-modelling of the Complex Client Supports program to improve care coordination and management, and the implementation of Home First and other initiatives for clients with complex needs.
    • These programs will also provide palliative or end-of-life care, improve discharge planning from acute-care facilities, and provide in-home delivery of wound care and certain IV therapies
  • Improving service planning in rural communities
    • This will include a review process that will inform strategies for the Yukon Home Care Program to support aging well in communities (including palliative and end-of-life care needs).
    • Community partnerships and program improvements unique to each community in Yukon will be identified.
    • An implementation plan for home care service enhancements will be created.
  • Enhancing digital infrastructure
    • These enhancements are necessary to increase the innovative use of technology, like virtual visits and mobile charting for home support workers.
    • Changes will enable clients to stay at home, and will improve access to health care services in rural and remote settings.

Mental Health and Addiction Services

Federal funding will be used to expand and enhance mental health and addiction services in the territory by:

  • Expanding access to community-based mental health and addiction services for children and youth (aged 10 to 25)
    • This expansion recognizes the effectiveness of early interventions to treat mild to moderate mental health disorders.
    • Support will include providing more ways for patients to access intervention and prevention services, increasing the number of clinical counselling positions, and implementing child and youth programming in schools.
  • Spreading evidence-based models of community mental health care and culturally appropriate interventions that are integrated with primary health services, and enhancing integrated services for people with complex health needs
    • This work will include implementing and expanding the use of mental health nurses in Whitehorse General Hospital’s emergency department to triage, assess, redirect and coordinate referrals to community mental health and addiction programs.
    • An electronic client information data system will be implemented.
    • Tele-psychiatry supports for children and youth in communities outside of Whitehorse will be developed.

Federal Provincial and Territorial Collaboration to Strengthen Health Care

Budget 2017 committed $11 billion over 10 years in new federal investments to improve access to mental health and addiction services as well as to home and community care across Canada. Provinces and territories already received the first year of this funding through a legislated transfer following their endorsement of the Common Statement of Principles on Shared Health Priorities*. Funding for the remaining years will flow to provinces and territories through a series of bilateral agreements.

The Common Statement of Principles sets out the objectives and pan-Canadian priorities for federal investments in home care and mental health. It commits governments to addressing specific health system gaps and to focusing efforts in areas that will have the greatest impact. Bilateral agreements will set out the details of how federal funding will be used in alignment with the Common Statement of Principles. As of August 2017, provinces and territories accepted their share of the $11 billion in federal health funding. 

Provinces and territories have also committed to working collectively and with the Canadian Institute for Health Information to develop a focused set of common indicators to measure progress and report to Canadians. 

Federal, provincial and territorial governments have also committed to engaging with regional and national Indigenous leaders on their priorities for improving the health outcomes of Indigenous peoples.


* The federal government has agreed to an asymmetrical arrangement with Quebec, distinct from the Common Statement of Principles.

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