How to: Claim your provider listing on the iamsick.ca map

You may have wondered how we keep all our map information up to date. Healthcare providers and their staff can update information for their clinic, pharmacy or diagnostic lab.

If you are a healthcare provider, read this tutorial to learn how to claim your location and gain access to your provider dashboard.
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Our Growing Team

It may be slightly tacky to compare our team to the blooming spring flowers outside, but we certainly are growing! For the past few weeks, our in-office team has multiplied almost threefold. Who are these people, and where did they come from?

Every year, iamsick.ca takes on new interns as part of the Impact Centre’s internship program. This year, we have a handful of student interns with us for the summer. A few new developers and volunteers have also joined the team.

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Since our group has grown so much, we took this opportunity to ask them why they decided to work with us, and where they see us going. Here’s some of what they had to say.

Why did you join iamsick.ca? 

I joined iamsick.ca because I think it is a great opportunity to apply my technical skills while learning about the healthcare system.

iamsick.ca really jumped out at me because as a marketer, I know I really have to believe in the product or service that I’m selling.  And I could see the good that iamsick is going to do.

What do you like about being part of the team? 

This is the best team I have ever worked with! Everyone is really enthusiastic and passionate about the work they do. What I really like about being part of this team is that this team is more than a team – it’s like family.

How do you see yourself making a difference for iamsick.ca, the healthcare system, and the world?

I look forward to helping iamsick.ca by helping to secure key deals that accelerate growth.

I believe that I am working to develop the healthcare system and helping to bring advancements to the basic right of getting healthcare .

Are you interested in joining us? 

We are currently looking for a Senior iOS Application Developer and a Senior Software Engineer. We will be at the Toronto Startup Job Fair at MaRS tomorrow, so drop by and say hi! For more information, email careers[at]iamsick.ca. We look forward to meeting you.

Erin’s Story

We like to hear from our users. iamsick.ca has been around for some time now, and we enjoy reading how the iamsick.ca website and mobile apps have helped users find healthcare, when and where they need it.

This week, we would like to share Erin’s story. Erin is an intern at iamsick.ca, and has been with us since September. One day, she found herself unexpectedly using our smartphone app to help her roommate find a doctor. Let’s see what she has to say…

My roommate had been sick for days and was getting worse.  I didn’t think there were any clinics open nearby on a Sunday but I didn’t want to take her to the emergency room to wait in the waiting room.  I wasn’t expecting much but I pulled out the iamsick.ca app, turned on the “Only show me what’s open” filter and actually found a clinic that was open for a few hours on Sundays, just a few blocks from our condo!

Thankfully, Erin’s roommate was able to see a doctor before it got too serious. It’s stories like these that drive us to improve our products.

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Erin and her roommate.

We love hearing back from our users. You can helps us improve our platform and introduce new features designed to help you. Please feel free to rate and review our mobile apps in their respective app stores, or email us at team@iamsick.ca with your feedback.

If you have an iamsick.ca story you would like to share, email us at team@iamsick.ca or comment below!

#HealthKick2015 – We are ready!

It has been 10 weeks since we were announced as finalists at this year’s MaRS HealthKick 2015 Showcase.

Since then, our co-founder and president, Ryan Doherty, has been hard at work with our team and advisors to create the perfect pitch. The showcase is tomorrow, and we’re more ready than ever!

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What should you expect?

We are a young, up-and-coming startup that is ready to take on the challenge of helping patients navigate the healthcare system. Ryan’s vision to connect patients with appropriate care drives the team to improve our platform and find new ways to help Canadians to maneuver across the confusing healthcare landscape.  Recently, we’ve even started exploring features that will improve the delivery of healthcare – from our virtual waiting room to same-day/same-week advanced access.

At HealthKick, we are seeking angel round investments. If successful, the investments and opportunities will help us grow and spread the platform across different disciplines, and across Canada.

We are looking forward to see you at HealthKicks 2015. Good luck to our fellow finalists!

The iamsick.ca Spring Roadshow

We have left winter and planted our feet firmly into spring. With the new season comes a new round of conferences and industry events. This year, iamsick.ca will be going to six from the end of April to the beginning of June. Are you going to any?

Spring Roadshow

April 27 – 28, 2015: OCE Discovery 2015

iamsick.ca will be joining 2600 of the best and brightest at Ontario Centres for Excellence’s Discovery conference next week. OCE Discovery is “Canada’s leading innovation-to-commercialization conference.” Hundreds of exhibitors will be present to showcase the latest and greatest in innovation, research and technology. Word has it that a Youtube co-founder will be there!

OCE Discovery will be held at the Metro Convention Centre in downtown Toronto.

April 30, 2015: AppsForHealth 2015

Focusing on digital health, AppsForHealth is where attendees and network with leaders in the industry. Many students and professionals attend this event. This year’s two keynotes will be looking at privacy and the future of wearables.

AppsForHealth will be held at Mohawk College in Hamilton.

May 1 – 2, 2015: UTIHI QuIPS Conference 2015 

QuIPS is organized by the University of Toronto Chapter of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement Open School. The focus of this conference is to look at quality improvement and patient safety. This year’s theme is Efficiency. We look forward to chatting about how iamsick.ca can help improve healthcare process and efficiency and patient satisfaction.

QuIPS will be held at the Li Ka Shing Institute at St. Michael’s Hospital, in downtown Toronto.

May 6 – 9, 2015: PRI-MED Primary Care Today 2015

An annual event, PRI-MED Primary Care Today is the largest Canadian CME/CE focusing on primary care. The conference includes series of workshops, keynotes and an exhibition floor. Thousands of family/general practitioners, pharmacists and nurse practitioners will be present.

PRI-MD Primary Care Today will be held in Mississauga.

May 7, 2015: HealthKick 2015

You may have heard already that we are a finalist at this year’s HealthKick event. The invitation-only event is where we will pitch our company to investors and other industry leaders for a chance to win this year’s pitch competition. We’ve been working hard at preparing for this!

HealthKick will be held at MaRS, in the Discovery District.

May 31 – June 2: e-Health Conference 2015

Last but definitely not least, we will be at the e-Health Conference at the end of May. The conference will showcase the latest in e-health, and is the premiere e-health event in Canada. We will be at a booth by the hackathon.

e-Health Conference will be held at the Metro Convention Centre in downtown Toronto.

Are you going to any of these events? Let us down below! We hope to see you there.

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After Hours Care: Where do you go?

You can’t always rely on scheduling an appointment days in advance when you need a doctor. Sometimes, you start feeling sick shortly after your doctor’s office closes or in the middle of the night. Thankfully, you’ve got a few options. In Ontario, there are a number of healthcare providers that can give you medical attention, depending on your need and whether you are rostered to a clinic.

Here are some of your options:

If you are rostered to a clinic, it may be part of a family health team

Your clinic should have after-hours options. FHTs, FHGs, FHNs and FHOs all offer extended hours services, where doctors set aside time to see patients outside of their regular hours. The benefit of taking advantage of your clinic’s extended hours is that all of your medical information is readily accessible. Even if you don’t see your own doctor, one of their colleagues will take care of you and they will have access to your medical file. This ensures that your records are always up-to-date, and your regular doctor will be able to follow-up with you.

Clinics may also offer a telephone service. The Telephone Health Advisory Service offered to patients in FHTs, FHGs, FHNs and FHOs connects you with a registered nurse who can help you. These nurses will know your clinic info, and can connect with them should you require more assistance. Make sure you get the right number from your clinic.  We will soon pilot a service that will let you see after-hours recommendations and your clinics Telephone Health Advisory Service number when you log into your iamsick.ca account.  You will hear more about this new feature over the next few months.

It’s really important that your medical records are accurate and up-to-date. Unless you are too far away or can’t call the after-hours telephone service, we recommend that see your regular doctor and clinic.

If you can’t visit your clinic, another option is to use iamsick.ca to find the closest open walk-in clinic or urgent care centre near you.

If you are NOT rostered to a clinic: 

Walk-in clinics and urgent care centres are available if you require non-emergency medical attention after-hours. To find your nearest open clinic, visit iamsick.ca and enter your location. We even have a handy filter that lets you hide everything that is closed at the time of search:

Open / Close Filter

Unrostered patients also have a telephone service, called Telehealth Ontario. The service is accessible 24/7. A registered nurse will answer any non-emergency health questions you may have.

If you need emergency help, call 911 or visit your local emergency department. 

If you’re a visual person, we’ve got this nifty flow chart to help you make your decision.

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This post is about options in Ontario, but we hope to blog about services across Canada soon. Stay tuned!

What the FIG/FIT/FOE? Decoding Ontario’s Family Practice Models

There’s no point sugarcoating it – the Canadian healthcare system can be overwhelming. The difference between healthcare providers, funding models and health regions, among other things, can be very confusing. We’ve learned a lot since we started iamsick.ca, and we wanted to share it with you.

Since we are located in Ontario, we wanted to start off with exploring Ontario’s family practice models.

You may have heard healthcare professionals talk about “fits”, “figs”, “fins” and “foes”. You may even be part of one! As you probably guessed, these terms don’t refer to tantrums, fruits, fish and unknown enemies. In fact, they refer to acronyms that describe the different kinds of family practices in Ontario.

Each practice model differs by the kinds of services offered, the number of hours committed by the doctor, their purpose and their funding model. We created the infographic below to summarize the four most confusing models: FHTs, FHGs, FHNs and FHOs. Read on for a more descriptive summary.

What the FIT/FIG/FIN/FOE?

1. Family Health Teams (FHT)

When you hear “fit” in the context of Ontario healthcare, chances are the speaker is referring to Family Health Teams. FHTs are multi-\disciplinary, meaning many different kinds of healthcare providers work together as your healthcare team. It is possible that there are many clinics or location that belong to one FHT.

Clinics associated with a FHT offer different healthcare services, such as pharmacies, diabetes management and mental health services. Each FHT has a different set of services, so it’s a good idea to check with your clinic.

2. Family Health Groups (FHG)

Family Health Groups may be smaller than FHTs, and are not multi-disciplinary. FHGs are a group of 3 or more doctors who have committed to providing after-hours care in addition to being available during regular hours.

Here, physicians are paid fee-for-service. Simply put, this means that family physicians are paid based on what service or procedure they perform.

3. Family Health Networks (FHN)

Like FHGs, Family Health Networks are groups of 3 or more doctors who are working as a team to provide care during regular and after hours. However, there are two main differences between FHNs and FHGs.

First, FHNs can apply to become FHTs. If they are successful in transitioning into a FHT, they can receive funding to bring multidisciplinary care providers to the team.

Second, FHNs are funded under a blended capitation model. The way it is calculated is complicated, but a simple way of understanding it is each family doctor is paid per patient. The amount that is paid per patient differs based on a predetermined set of criteria. In the case of FHNs, these criteria account for the patient’s age and sex.

4. Family Health Organizations (FHO)

Finally, we have Family Health Organizations. Like FHGs and FHNs, family physicians working in this model work in groups of 3 or more, and commit to regular and after hours services. FHOs can also apply to become FHTs, just like FHNs.

However, family doctors in FHOs are paid differently. They are still paid in the blended capitation model. The criteria used to determine the base pay is calculated differently.

Now you know the difference between FHTs, FHGs, FHNs and FHOs!

If you are looking for a new family doctor accepting new patients, visit iamsick.ca and click “Family doc accepting new patients” to see your nearby options.

Are you a patient or healthcare provider in any of these models? What do you think about these different structures? Let us know below! 

Celebrating Canadian Innovation

Are you a regular reader of Canadian Living Magazine? If you are, you might have noticed something interesting on page 62 of the April 2015 issue…

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That’s right! iamsick.ca is featured in this month’s issue of Canadian Living Magazine.

We are incredibly honoured to be listed as an innovative Canadian solution. But we are far from the only Canadian innovation in our space. Healthcare technology is full of new and creative ideas, and the number grows every day. Events and organizations like Hacking Health help nurture these ideas into realities.

iamsick.ca is very lucky to belong in such an organization. The Impact Centre, located at the University of Toronto, is an incubator that helps scientists and engineers from different disciplines transform their research into businesses.

Two years ago, our co-founder Ryan took part in the Impact Centre’s Techno program. Techno is a summer bootcamp that teaches aspiring entrepreneurs the basics of business.

In this program, participants learn about product development, intellectual property strategies, venture funding, and many other business topics. Successful graduates of this program will have the foundations to grow their company. iamsick.ca is just one of the many companies to have sprung from this program.

MaRS is also a great resource for start-ups and ventures. As a MaRS client, iamsick.ca has benefited from their courses, services and workshops. Non-MaRS clients can also benefit from what they have to offer. The MaRS Entrepreneurs Toolkit features a library of resources, workshops and the Entrepreneurship 101 certificate program.


We want to take this opportunity to thank our supporters over the years. Our many advisors, champions, and believers have helped us grow from a small idea among friends, into an ever-growing company.

We also want to encourage anyone who has ever had a good idea to explore different opportunities. You never know. You may have the next big thing in your hands!

Innovation drives progress. We know from experience that growing these ideas is no simple task. To end off this blog post, we would like to pose a question:

What can we do to foster Canadian health innovation? 

Please share your thoughts in the comments below!

Presenting New Features at Primary Care Day

iamsick.ca will be at the second Annual Primary Care Day this Friday, March 27, 2015. The event is presented by the Mississauga Halton LHIN and MIssissauga Halton Primary Care Network. Primary care providers will have an opportunity to chat with our co-founder, Ryan, and the rest of our team about our platform.

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In late 2014, we started working together with Mississauga Halton LHIN to bring patients better access to timely and appropriate care. A core element of our platform is helping patients see relevant information. We believe that will help them find the right care at the right now. We have been working hard with MH LHIN prepare features that will help patients and health care providers in the Mississauga-Halton region.

On Friday, primary care providers will have the opportunity to explore our platform. Here’s a sneak peak of three features we have built for this project:

1. Provider Accounts

Health care providers will be able to use iamsick.ca to update any facility information, including holiday hours, after hours, and any contact information that is included in our system. This feature was designed with flexibility and convenience in mind. It is important to us that health care providers can easily update their patients with the most up-to-date and accurate information.

2. Holiday Hours

Each healthcare facility’s holiday hours will be prominently displayed. We understand there are challenges around holiday surges. These challenges can burden hospital emergency departments, while patients risk not receiving appropriate and timely care. With this feature, we hope to address these challenges. Patients will be able to view holiday hours and visit the appropriate care provider for their medical needs over holidays.

3. After Hours Information 

Similar to our Holiday Hours feature, we are also displaying after hours recommendations for primary care clinics. We know that each care provider wants to make sure that patients are receiving the best care. This means providing patients with the right after hours information, in the event they may require medical attention outside of regular business hours.

We look forward to presenting our new features on Friday at the Primary Care Day conference. Attendees will be able to try out these new features, provide feedback, and learn about how to use iamsick.ca to enhance their practice.

Canada Health Infoway Corporate Summary Plan

Every year, Canada Health Infoway releases an annual Corporate Summary Plan outlining key objectives and performance expectations for the year. As a non-profit government-funded corporation, Infoway works with the health care community, government bodies and industry partners to improve healthcare across Canada. The purpose of each annual corporate summary plan is to define key objectives and measures to further their goal.

Earlier this year, Canada Health Infoway released their 2015-2016 Summary Corporate Plan. Taken together with the 2014-2015 Summary Corporate Plan, key points with respect to the consumer health space include:

1. Improving the patient experience for Canadians, as outlined in the 2014-2015 plan

In the 2014-2015 plan, Infoway stated their support, in the form of investment and encouragement, for consumer health innovations. The work that we do aligns with this objective, as we also aim to enhance the healthcare experience for patients.

In fact, patients and clinics who use our system are already benefiting from this. We have worked together with community-based partners to implement the iamsick.ca e-booking system, supported by Infoway’s e-Booking Initiative. Clinics received investments from Infoway’s Consumer Health Solutions program. While still early, we look forward to reporting positive results in the future.

2. Deliver insights on emerging technologies, such as consumer health and mobile technologies, as outlined in the 2014-2015 plan

Canada Health Infoway is a major national body overlooking the Canadian health technology landscape. As such, iamsick.ca looks towards them for guidance regarding future developments in this space. Since we actively engage patients, clinics and administrative partners, insight from Infoway’s perspective will be especially valuable as we continue to grow.

3. Continued investment in e-booking solutions, as stated in the 2015-2016 plan

While the key objectives in the 2015-2016 plan focus on continuity of care and implementing remote telemonitoring technologies, we appreciate that the Canada Health Infoway will continue investing in e-booking solutions. Their support will not only help iamsick.ca continue to improve our e-booking system, they will also be supporting practices who want to improve their patients’ experience.

Moving forward, iamsick.ca will be working on building a better e-booking platform for Canadians and our healthcare partners.

If you have any questions regarding our e-booking platform, please feel free to leave a comment below or email us at partners[at]iamsick.ca.

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For more information about Canada Health Infoway, check out their website. The website offers many resources, including guides, best practices, and a webinar series