Skip to main content
Back

Blog

Measuring Up 2018: Complex Challenges

Anna Greenberg

Hospital overcrowding and hallway health care are realities facing today’s health care system in Ontario. The fact that they represent both a source and a symptom of the pressures that patients and frontline clinicians face underscores the complexity of the challenges to improve the situation.

This is one of the main messages to come from Measuring Up 2018, Health Quality Ontario’s yearly report on the performance of the province’s health system.

The report documents the cascading effects of hospital overcrowding such as longer wait times for admission to hospital from the emergency room; longer wait times to transfer out of hospital to other types of care – such as long-term care, home care; and insufficient access to mental health and addictions care. At a time when more and more patients have complex health needs, these stressors on the system are also contributing to rising levels of distress among unpaid caregivers.

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.

123

Let’s make our health system healthier

Join Our Patient, Family and Public Advisors Program

Patients, families and the public are central to improving health quality.


Man smiling

Sign up for our newsletter

Are you passionate about quality health care for all Ontarians? Stay in-the-know about our newest programs, reports and news.

Health Quality Connect - Health Quality Ontario's newsletter - on an iPad and a cell phone