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The Art and Science of Measurement in Healthcare

Dr. Joshua Tepper

(Join Health Quality Ontario CEO Dr. Joshua Tepper for a tweet chat to discuss this topic on Nov. 8, 1:30 pm ET)

At Health Quality Ontario we like to measure things. After all, data is the cornerstone of quality improvement. But are we measuring the right things? Are we measuring too much? How do we move from measurement to improvement? How do we involve professionals and patients in deciding what we measure? How does personal experience balance data?

Health Care Built on Relationships

Dr. Joshua Tepper

Relationships are the bedrock upon which our health care system is built.

Nowhere was this described with more eloquence than at the recent Health Quality Transformation (HQT) conference in Toronto, where keynote speakers Dr. Don Berwick and Kim Katrin Milan both addressed this issue from very different perspectives.

Measuring the System’s Fault Lines

Dr. Joshua Tepper

A quality health care system seamlessly delivers care across a broad spectrum of care settings and patient populations. Unfortunately, even a good health care system can have fault lines into which patients can fall and where quality care is deficient.

Measuring Up, Health Quality Ontario’s newly released 11th annual report on the performance of the province’s health system and on the health of Ontarians, documents those fault lines as well as other areas where the provincial system can improve. It takes the pulse of the system through measurement and through narratives from people like Gordon, Lilac and Elgin who share their experiences as patients and that of Shawn Dookie, a nurse practitioner.

MyPractice: My Primary Care

Dr. David Kaplan

According to a recent report from Health Quality Ontario, 9 Million Prescriptions, one in seven Ontarians fills a prescription for opioids every year. More than 9 million prescriptions for opioids were filled in the province in 2015/16. Canada remains the second-largest consumer of prescription opioids in the world, after the US.

Unfortunately, many patients are receiving these highly addictive drugs, from both legitimate and illicit sources, with only questionable benefit. This is a complex problem involving many health care providers and many interwoven factors compounding the situation.

While physicians are faced with the challenges of treating patients with often complex disorders and few resources, more appropriate prescribing by all physicians is part of the solution.

Making Patient Engagement Meaningful and Measurable

Dr. Joshua Tepper, Claude Lurette and Emily Nicholas

(Join Health Quality Ontario CEO Dr. Joshua Tepper and patient advisors Emily Nicholas and Claude Lurette for a tweet chat to discuss this topic on Wednesday, September 27 at 7:00 p.m. (ET)).

Involving patients in the planning, delivery and assessment of health care is core to supporting high quality care. Involving patients helps us achieve patient-centredness which is one of the defining dimensions of a quality health system.

Last year, Health Quality Ontario released the province’s first Patient Engagement Framework to define a common approach for engagement across the province and guide people in planning for implementing and evaluating patient engagement activities across the health system from personal care to system-wide governance. Engaging patients at all levels is a relatively new process so such a framework is not intended to be set in stone and could evolve as more work is undertaken to understand the whole process.

But how does one make that engagement meaningful and how do you assess the impact of that engagement? How do we know engaging patients is making a difference?

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Claude Lurette and Kowsiya Vijayartnam, Health Quality Ontario Patient, Family and Caregiver Advisors Council Co-Chairs

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