eReferrals in Ontario

Expand your network with smart digital referrals

The Ontario eServices Program provides an efficient electronic referral solution and access to a large referral network.

Trusted System Partner to

Electronic Referrals in Ontario is supported by the Ontario eServices Program.

The Ontario program provides a comprehensive digital referral solution that streamlines your referral workflow with secure digital referrals and connects you to a wider community of referral sources and recipients.

The program is open to primary care providers and clinical specialists, as well as service providers.  Over 2,000 providers use the eReferrals program, including:

  • Cardiology
  • Gastroenterology
  • Diagnostic imaging
  • General surgery
  • Orthopaedics
  • Pediatrics

Join the eReferrals program today to grow your referral network and improve the referral experience for clinicians, administrators, and patients.

Doctor doing research

What sets Electronic Referrals in Ontario apart?

Electronic Referrals in Ontario provides an eReferrals solution for clinicians and access to an established referral network.

Over 380,000 referrals have been made to clinicians in Ontario through the program’s Ocean eReferrals platform. This platform integrates with electronic medical records systems, embeds clinical appropriateness guidelines and best practices into forms, and ensures referrals are delivered securely and accurately while simplifying follow-up and clinician-specialist communication.

Primary care providers gain access to an online, searchable directory of specialists and service providers, while recipients benefit from a new source of referrals.

Through the program, we have also connected the Ocean eReferral system to other electronic systems that are critical for and end-to-end eReferral support.

Illustrated doctors on computer

Clinical impact

Faster referral times: Greatly reduce the time to dispatch, receive, and confirm referrals. eReferrals has been found to shorten referral turnaround time to 23 hours per referral from 68 under a fax system.

Reduces inappropriate referrals: eReferrals has contributed to a reduction in unnecessary MRI referrals by 12 percent during its deployment with the Ontario Ministry of Health.

Expansive network

Broaden your network: Our network features a wide range of providers, from primary care physicians and specialists to diagnostic imaging centres, accessed through a web-based, searchable directory. Discover providers by geographic location, available services, and wait times.

Connected technology

Embedded guidelines: Evidence-based clinical guidelines are integrated within eReferrals forms, embedding clinical guidance across the system. This functionality increases the appropriateness of referrals and improves adherence to best practices, enhancing care quality.

New insights: Analytics provide administrators with a deeper understanding of referral volumes and accepting sites, allowing for a reduction in wait times and ongoing system-level improvements.

Expand Your Referral Network


End-system agnostic

eReferrals is accessed through Ocean eReferrals by CognisantMD and is managed through leading EMR systems. We also connect the eReferral pathway to other systems (including Caredove, CHRIS, and Salesforce).

Smart referral forms

Dynamic forms prepopulate with EMR information and offer bi-directional communication and file attachment within the referral, providing a single source of referral knowledge.

Patient notifications

Automated alerts keep patients informed about the status of their referrals, and allow them to confirm their appointments electronically, saving time for staff and helping reduce no-shows.

Supports your delivery models

Electronic Referrals in Ontario supports system and regional support models, such as central intake models and assessment centres.

medical professional talking to patient

About the Think Research Consortium eReferral Partnership

The Think Research Consortium eReferral Partnership consists of four partners: Think Research, CognisantMD, the Centre for Effective Practice, and the Ontario eServices Program. Together, they deliver a comprehensive solution for electronic referrals including connections to other solutions such as Caredove and Caseworks.