People AND systems. Relationships NOT red tape. Health NOT just health care.



We can build resilient communities, help all people live with dignity, and improve health and well-being if we work together on the things that matter most. Health Commons Solutions Lab works with everyone connected to a problem to create workable solutions to complex health challenges. We are solution designers, health planners, public health professionals and social scientists. We bring together partners to co-create solutions in the places where people live.



older adults having tea

Connect and Include Older Adults as they age


Older adults can contribute to their communities in many ways and we should strive to make them feel connected and included.

Isolation among seniors contributes significantly to poor quality of life and negatively impacts health. We know that when someone lacks social connection, their physical and mental health can suffer. Research shows that social isolation also unnecessarily costs the health care system. For example, by increasing the length of stay in hospitals and other institutional settings. We can and we must do better.


Related Projects


Make Wellness and Mental Health part of Everyone’s Job


It’s everyone’s job to safeguard and support people’s mental health and well-being. Mental health spans all sectors, including health care, housing, justice, and education. 

Integrated systems of mental health services working in partnership with primary care and other health care providers are important to improving mental health. We also believe that peer to peer supports and activation of communities to combat isolation are key to creating the conditions for everyone to thrive.

son with father suffering from dimentia

faces of people all over the world

Deepen our understanding of what shapes health in communities.


Designing an effective and connected health care system requires a deep understanding what people need, and tools to help providers organize health care around the diverse needs of communities.

To do this, we need:

  • Comprehensive health and social data that capture the health of communities and influencing factors. What data is required to help Ontario Health Teams (OHTs) understand the health of communities and optimize outcomes?

  • End users involved in the design, testing and evaluation of health planning tools. Do the tools help different stakeholders reach consensus and collective understanding?

  • A broad definition of health and innovative ways to get people the supports they need. How can we best match health and social needs with local capacity? As people’s health care needs change, how do we ensure integrated, connected care?