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Wait Times: A Metric to Watch

Dr. Joshua Tepper

Earlier this summer, Health Quality Ontario revamped its public reporting on wait times to make it more user-friendly. We also added reporting on the wait time between a specialist receiving the referral from the patient's family doctor, to the patient's first surgical or specialist appointment, to gain a fuller picture of the patient experience.

Since then, the data has been used on numerous occasions to document how well or badly one hospital is doing compared to the rest of the province. There have also been almost 100,000 page views of the wait times pages on the Health Quality Ontario website since their launch. Interest in the information remains strong and there were more than 13,000 page views of the nine wait times measures pages between mid-November and mid-December.

Choosing Wisely for Better Care

Health care quality is defined as a health system that is safe, effective, patient-centred, timely, efficient, and equitable and the Choosing Wisely Canada campaign aligns with these goals.

Delivering high-quality care is about more than just appropriately providing care to those who require it in an equitable and safe fashion. It is also about not providing treatments, procedures or tests that are deemed to be unnecessary, or potentially harmful to patients.

Improving Safety and Quality for Surgery Patients

Dr. Tim Jackson

During their time in the operating room and in the days of recovery that follow, surgical patients are vulnerable and their safety is of prime importance. It should come as no surprise then that health organizations and providers in Ontario have turned to a proven program of data gathering, program enhancements and culture change to improve the quality of the care they provide to surgery patients.

Installing Better Signposts

Anna Greenberg

Public reporting on health system performance is an essential part of health care improvement. This we know. But in order for such reporting to be effective, the data being reported has to be read and, if necessary, acted upon by those for whom it is intended.

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