As we begin a new year and look towards further enhancing quality care in Ontario, it’s a good time to reflect on the annual public commitment that health care organizations make to their communities through their Quality Improvement Plans (QIPs). These plans share what was achieved to improve care in the previous year and set out how they will improve health care quality within their organizations in the coming year.
On April 1, 2019, more than 1000 QIPs will be submitted to Health Quality Ontario by hospitals, long-term care homes, home-care organizations and primary care teams and simultaneously shared with their local communities.
It is worth remembering that QIPs have only been required in Ontario for the past eight years, starting with Ontario’s 142 public hospitals. The original QIP stated “they should be seen as a tool, providing a structured format and common language that focuses an organization on change.” This was a major shift from the prevailing, more ad hoc approach to quality most Canadian health care organizations took, where there was limited support for local improvement efforts and as a result, change was diffused.
The Safe Patients/Safe Staff program at Sinai Health System provides resources to help staff safely and effectively care for patients who are at risk of aggressive or dangerous behaviour.
At Grand River Hospital Corporation, teams are available to respond to codes for potential workplace violent incidents. In the event of a code called for aggressive behaviour/physical danger, an immediate and mandatory debrief is held to ensure the emotional, psychological and physical wellbeing of all staff and patients.
The North Bay Regional Health Centre and the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health are among nine hospitals in Ontario implementing the Safewards program, an evidence-based series of interventions that promote patient and employee safety by reducing conflict and containment.
Ten years ago, I gave birth in hospital to my first child – a healthy, beautiful baby girl.
I still remember looking into her eyes for the first time and I still remember what it was like to be a patient. I remember wanting to provide feedback to someone about my experiences – both the good (great breastfeeding support) and the bad (being woken before dawn for a blood pressure check). But there was never any opportunity.
Bringing quality to primary care is a daunting task.
But, for the committed family doctors, nurse practitioners and other health care practitioners who provide care to more than 13.5 million people in the province on a daily basis, the magnitude of opportunity to do better is great.
The newly submitted 2016/17 Quality Improvement Plans are now available for your review – each tells a story of commitment to quality.