Reducing Impact on Health from Financial Strain (RIFS)

This website is a place where you can share your insights, experiences, and ideas in reducing impact on financial strain in your community.

How might Communities and Primary Care Reduce the Impact of Financial Strain

A dedicated team of partners are keen to understand what is important to communities members in reducing impact on health from financial strain. Although our project is in select communities, we invite all communities to learn along side, share progress and highlight promising opportunities.

RIFS Community Coalition from Vermilion

Some of the RIFS Community Coalition teams

The ‘Reducing the Impact of Financial Strain (RIFS)’ project will strengthen connections between community members and organizations including primary care teams. They aim to collaboratively design local solutions to support health by addressing financial concerns in a sensitive, compassionate and sustainable way. While community looks at improving supports, Primary care teams will identify and support patients with financial concerns and help them access appropriate community supports.

Income is one of the most important factors that influences health. Financial strain is economic pressure that can cause stress and harm health. Anyone can experience difficulty making ends meet at any time

This website is a place where you can share your insights, experiences, and ideas in reducing impact on financial strain in your community.

How might Communities and Primary Care Reduce the Impact of Financial Strain

A dedicated team of partners are keen to understand what is important to communities members in reducing impact on health from financial strain. Although our project is in select communities, we invite all communities to learn along side, share progress and highlight promising opportunities.

RIFS Community Coalition from Vermilion

Some of the RIFS Community Coalition teams

The ‘Reducing the Impact of Financial Strain (RIFS)’ project will strengthen connections between community members and organizations including primary care teams. They aim to collaboratively design local solutions to support health by addressing financial concerns in a sensitive, compassionate and sustainable way. While community looks at improving supports, Primary care teams will identify and support patients with financial concerns and help them access appropriate community supports.

Income is one of the most important factors that influences health. Financial strain is economic pressure that can cause stress and harm health. Anyone can experience difficulty making ends meet at any time

Discussions: All (10) Open (8)
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    There are so many inspiring stories of communities working together to support each other. And many communities have put together a list of resources on their website. Check out Morinville, for example. What resources and services are in your community that support people as they navigate all the stresses and financial challenges of COVID-19? What of the provincial and federal programs have they been using? Share what supports have helped you and what would be helpful? 



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    We are learning of so many great examples of how community and clinical teams are working together. Tell us about your clinic community partnership journey. What made it successful and what challenges did you face? How did it chnage the impact you had? Share any tools that might help others along the way.

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    Filing taxes and accessing the benefits can be life changing for those with financial strain. We know that filing income tax can be challenging, especially for those with low income. Prosper Canada highlights some of those barriers and what we can do to reduce them.

    What gets in your way from doing your taxes? What have communities and clinics done to help remove the barriers?

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    Think about  times when you or people in your community were stressed due to finances.

    What have been some of the biggest challenges?

    Note: If you are comfortable, write the community you are from at the bottom of your post with *place. That way, community members can learn about unique community needs.

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    Think about  times when you or people in your community were stressed due to finances.

    What have been important or invaluable supports in your community?

    Note: If you are comfortable, write the community you are from at the bottom of your post with *place. That way, community members can learn about unique community needs.


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    Health can be impact by factors outside the health system such as the places where people live, work and play. Thinking about your community environments and strengths

    • What you love about living in your community?
    • What do you see as the strengths of your community?
    • Thinking about people who are dealing with financial stress or when you are dealing with financial strain, can you share a situation where lives were positively impacted. What were key supports? What was important to them/you throughout their journey?
    Note: If you are comfortable, write the community you are from at the bottom of your post with *place. That way, community members can learn about unique community needs.
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    Share your thoughts and resources that might inspire communities with ideas to support financial strain and income as a determinant of health.  Here is one example: PovertyCosts. Poverty is a disease that is much cheaper to cure than to treat.




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    ​Interacting with patients and community members in a sensitive and compassionate manner and working with them address financial stress in ways that are meaningful, relevant and sustainable is so important.

    McLeod River PCN in Whitecourt and AMA have shared a patient story that shows the impact of focusing on what matters to the patient. Patients stated they are feeling the team truly care and seek what really matters to them which can not be determined by a test. They say they no longer feel their relationship with providers are adversarial, trying to convince them of their needs. 

    What does sensitive and compassionate interaction look like to you?


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    Across Canada, more family doctors are looking at how they can support the whole person and social factors that impact our health like income. They are asking their patients if they are struggling to make ends meet. We want to know how you would feel about your family doctor asking you about your financial situation and supporting patients with financial stress.

    We want to know how you feel about your family doctor asking and supporting you around financial stress?

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    Earlier this year, we gathered evidence from the literature and from Alberta planners, leaders in our health care system, and community and social service partners to explore:

    • How might understanding population health needs improve health services planning across sectors?
    • What opportunities exist in how we plan services for Albertans?
    • How do you see yourself/team being involved?
    Please see the attached document
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