Island Health Authority
The Island Health Region spans from the Capital Region in the south, to Port Hardy and Kingcome Inlet in the north, and includes seven regional districts, 36 municipalities and 50 First Nations communities.
Island Health is geographically diverse, and features densely populated urban areas, small rural communities, and extremely remote settlements accessible only by water or air.
We know that chronic diseases can be prevented or delayed by addressing key risk factors, including physical inactivity, unhealthy eating, obesity, alcohol consumption, and tobacco use. It takes a village to create a healthy community; no one can do all this work in isolation – it is a shared responsibility that requires collaborative action.
Currently VIHA has a renewed focus on collaboration to keep people well at the community and population levels. This is backed by our strategic aim of improved health for island residents through strong partnerships; including partnerships with municipal, regional, and First Nation’s governments, as well as through our work with local hospital districts.
Given our diversity and size, Island Health has varied avenues for connecting with local governments* and other community partners on prevention of illness and promotion of health (although Island Health works with local governments on many other initiatives as well).
*Local government refers to both municipal and First Nation’s governments.
Healthy community planning
Island Health representatives work directly with local government staff and leaders in a consultative role or as a stakeholder or regulator related to specific local government initiative. We also seek local government input and expertise on Island Health initiative.
Healthy community partnerships
Island Health representatives can act as partners and participants on committees, coalitions or special interest tables involving local government and other partners. Island Health has involvement in partnership initiatives addressing a spectrum of promotion and prevention issues, including: social planning, harm reduction, downtown safety, mental health, substance use, food policy, transportation planning, recreation, child development, and seniors’ issues.
Healthy community collaborations
Island Health can work with local governments to plan, initiate, and coordinate collaborative projects and network with diverse partners sharing common aims for promoting health at the community level. For example, Island Health has supported the development of a number of multi-stakeholder Community Health Networks in the health region.
Accessing Support from Island Health
Island Health has a number of supports available to complement local government work toward building healthier communities:
DATA: Island Health can provide health information to support community decision-making. (eg, LHA Profiles).
COORDINATION: For collaborative projects, Island Health has staff available to facilitate networking, initiate collaborative processes, and coordinate projects related to building healthy communities.
CONTENT EXPERTISE: Island Health is home to various experts that can provide content expertise bringing a health lens to various municipal planning and policy initiatives.
FUNDING: Island Health can help connect communities with funding opportunities and can provide letters of support for grant applications that demonstrate an aim of improving health at the community level.
Contact Island Health
If you do not have a local Health Community contact at Island Health, you can start here:
Phone: 250-755-6215 x.56244