Patient Experience Q&A Sessions: Dr. Doris Grinspun, CEO, Registered Nurses Association of Ontario

We met Dr. Doris Grinspun, CEO of the Registered Nurses Association of Ontario at the National Forum on Patient Experience West.

Strategy Institute: Okay, so just to start, give us an overview of what you do and the organizational work that you do.

Doris: R.A.N.O. is a living organization in the area of a clinical and healthy work environment, best practice guidelines which includes, of course, guidelines on client-centered care on therapeutic relationships, on patient-centered teaching and on a variety of other topics that all bring us back to the importance of being centred about the people that we so much need to assist or work with. Our analysis of leading organizations, the professional body for registered nurses in Ontario is a leading organization at the policy level, so that’s another huge, important pillar, and when you look at policy, and you look at for example how to advance, full scope of practice for nurses, how to advance access to care for people; they go side by side.

We look at how to advance health and wellness for the people in Ontario for that market in Canada, that’s where social determinants of health come to play, environmental determinants of health. So, at the end of the day, we contribute tremendously to a patient-centered care from a universal access perspective and bring the experience of people to table to contribute to the design of the system.

Strategy Institute: Fantastic! So, because you’re at the forefront and you have all these nurses giving you this feedback about interacting with the people who are receiving this care, what do you think are the most pressing issues that organizations are facing when they’re trying to achieve this level of patient experience?

DORIS: First of all to ensure that everybody can achieve a good experience, not only some and that’s where the issue of universal access and timely access in all geographical areas of the province, in all sectors not only hospital care but community care are critically important. And then that experience be the most positive and relevant one for people.

All the way from public health to primary care to community care to home care, hospital care, palliative care, that the experience be a seamless one, and still is to this day sectoral. That the transitions of care or the transitions of access to care for people are still a tremendous period. That’s where, again, the role of a registered nurse, they provide full scope of practice can hugely, hugely improve timely access to care anywhere, in the country and anywhere in the province. The role of nurse practitioners, the role of nurse anaesthetists, etc.

At the core of it is the values, right, the values that the nurses bring to the system, and those values need to be – and also for organizations – need to be fully anchored in a person perspective, and what’s best for the citizens, for the people that live here, and what’s best for immigrants, what’s best for people in marginalized communities, what’s best for people in affluent communities, for everybody, right, so that people don’t experience systemic discrimination in the access they have to healthcare and then, of course, the quality of healthcare services they receive. So, we work very, very diligently and intensely, with nurses, we also work in the same intense way with civil society groups to bring and to understand their perspective, so we can together shape the system of tomorrow.

We work of course with higher levels of administration on all healthcare organizations, hospitals, homecare, etc. and with governments and with all political parties. And in that also you have a play of the media, how the media can assist us in moving the agenda of a timely access everywhere for people and in a way that is relevant and centered on their needs, not the needs of healthcare professionals or of specific sectors.

Strategy Institute: That’s actually a very good point. Because media can be a driving force and can force those political parties to move forward with those kinds of methods. That’s really great, thank you.

DORIS: Well, we work very heavily with the media because through the media we bring the voice of the perspectives of patients, of families, people, residents in long term care facilities, etc. and of nurses, so that’s a hugely important medium, the media, to really master the political will, to move in a direction that will benefit all Ontarians.

Strategy Institute: Fantastic, and you spoke at the event earlier today, and you attended yesterday….

DORIS: Yesterday I couldn’t attend because I was engaged in a tremendous community-based consultation with people with real, live experience in poverty, so people that spoke about unemployment from their own perspective, people that spoke about disabilities from their own perspective, people that spoke about addictions, people that live with the burden of being addicted, single mothers, single fathers, new immigrants. We are jointly working for change with an umbrella organization for civil society groups, where we brought together many, many voices, from social insurance issues to minimum wage issues and groups that are working to actually hear from the lived experience of people no different than what we are talking today – just not in an illness mode, but actually, in a “how do we help people that are struggling with poverty to give voice to their voice”, because we know that social developments of health is a critical actually determinant of health, if you end up ill or not.

So, with it, that consultation for almost 3 hours, with all the politicians there,  but more importantly, with people from the public, so much like you have today 6 or 7 individuals were presenting the public, this was the public and very few healthcare professionals that we were learning from them to really move the agenda together forward, so that’s why I couldn’t be here. I’m sorry…I needed to know the importance of their perspectives which I learnt a lot.

Strategy Institute: That’s really, really interesting, of course it’s very important for work like this because, as we’re speaking from the patient voice, the public voice is just as equally important.

DORIS: It’s the same! Patients are first persons and then they sometimes happen to have a diagnosis of an illness, but they’re people like you and me and anybody else and tomorrow you may be a patient too. Yesterday I may have been a patient so you know we better start to walk the dog, listen, understand, and walk the dog in all of the organizations of the healthcare system of tomorrow.

Strategy Institute:  Perfect, and just one last question, how would you describe your experience at the event overall? You were both on stage this morning, and attending some of the sessions…

DORIS: I really enjoyed the variety of perspectives. I very much enjoyed what’s happening in some healthcare organizations, it’s very important work they’re doing. I also enjoyed even more so the views of patients when they spoke, the courage that it takes for someone to share very difficult moments and hopefully we all have the same courage to hear what you are saying and then to take action in all of our organizations.

Strategy Institute: Thank you so much…

Check out the Patient Experience Forum where we will be gathering to meet and learn from those organisations successfully driving patient experience strategies. Join us and take advantage of the early bird discounts now. Download the full conference agenda.

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Key Challenges and Solutions in Patient Experience

Patient Experience Q&A Sessions: Sumeet Kumar from North Bay Regional Health Centre

We met and interviewed Sumeet Kumar at National Forum for Patient Experience West. Sumeet is the Director of Quality & Performance Excellence for North Bay Regional Health Centre (NBRHC)

Strategy Institute: And what stage are you at with your patient experience initiative and how is it going?

SUMEET: We’re in the very early stages. We talked about how we would like to do that and the first thing that we are doing is that we are putting up the right infrastructure in place before we actually embark on the journey. Now, what is happening is we’ve looked after the whole structure itself, we have looked at where we would want to have patient and family focused care coordinators  who would probably help us in terms of making sure that we capture the patient voices and include them in the new processes that we develop moving forward. So, we have, now at this point in time, we are basically in the stage of hiring these two individuals internally, we are not going external, the intent being really that you know people who are in the system know the system better and there is no reason why you should really go out when you have the capability and the skill set within the organization.

So we want to tap into that but we want have make sure that we have the right talent of people doing the right talent of job, which supports us all along our patient experience journey in terms of incorporating them and that’s the first stage.

We have tried to do away with all the different terminologies as I was mentioning to you about the patient-centred care and the patient engagement and the patient advocacy and the patient safety coordinator rules and all those things, we’ve tried to look at, holistically, what it means to the system, at a system level, in the organization, what that role is intended to do without getting into the specifics of the particular issue per se, we need to understand what the profile is expected to do for that role.

So, looking at the requirement of accountability for that role, we have looked at it from that perspective and we have divided the whole profile of the individual to take care of the different elements and merge them and amalgamate them into the system. So, we are looking at a systemic approach, not of compartmental approach in terms of deployment of patient engagement or patient-centred care.

Strategy Institute: That great. So what were you hoping to get out of this conference specifically?

SUMEET: The intent was really to understand what’s out there in the industry, we don’t want to reinvent, right? Because if something has already been done some places as best practice, we want to tap into that resource, we do that from there, and basically, take it to the next level from there. So there’s this information sharing which is happening in this session, which is great, a lot of information which we were not clear about or we did not have access to. It is being made available as a part of the central point when people bring together different practices that their organizations are following, and this helps us in terms of understanding what is out there in the marketplace at this point in time, what other hospitals are doing that there is an opportunity for us to tap into, so this is a good place to start, from that perspective.

To meet patient experience professionals making a difference to Canadian Healthcare be sure to check our Patient Experience conference. We have one of the strongest panel of speakers in Canada and over 200 delegates to network with – check out the companies who attend this event. You can also read reviews from previous delegates.

Where is the focus in Patient Experience in 2014

Patient Experience Q&A Sessions: Anya Humphrey from Cancer Care Ontario

Strategy Institute: Okay, so just to start, give us an overview of what you do and the organizational work that you do.

Anya: My name is Anya Humphrey and I’m location and family adviser at Cancer Care Ontario. I’m actually here today with the Canadian Federation for Healthcare Improvement.

Strategy Institute: And how does the Patient Experience model apply to your organization, what are you guys looking to achieve?

Anya: Well, really what I wanted to be interviewed about today, was the fact that this is a patient engagement conference and I feel as though my experience here kind of reflects my experience across the ward, that everybody here is a hard-working, intelligent wonderfully motivated person, and there’s this wonderful, I don’t like to use the word ‘movement’, that was mentioned earlier today,  it’s like a movement in a way, but it’s a wonderful ‘process’ that’s happening.

But, I guess because we’ve never done this before, we don’t have the vision of how it should be or even necessarily how we want it to be. Everybody’s talking about patient stories which I absolutely believe in, however, there weren’t any patient stories today, and when we were going to divide up into areas of expertise, patients weren’t even mentioned, it wasn’t part of the focus…

I would have loved to see a patient or family representative at every table, because one of the things that was said is that it’s the interpersonal connection that makes the change. So, I’m sitting with people that I can talk to, but how many people at the other tables had anybody that they could just talk to about, “Well, what’s your experience?”, you know, “What kind of change would you like to see?”  So, I don’t mean to criticize the conference, I’m really delighted that such conferences exist, but I would have liked to see patient and family involvement in the planning of the conference. And I think some things would have been different.

Strategy Institute: So just to follow up on that, you’d like to see more active participants that are patients and just get them more involved as part of the discussion?

Anya: I guess the best I can do in terms of envisioning the future is to see us all collaborating. And the stories that did come out today about where that’s already being done were really inspiring and certainly, at Cancer Care Ontario, I feel as though I’m welcomed, and I sit on the measurement committee. I was invited here by the Canadian Federation of Healthcare Improvement, that’s a national group, I’m very blessed to be part of endeavours that I think are really making a difference, but it’s painful to sit in a room where everybody wants to make this good change and I feel invisible. I don’t mean me, personally, but the group that I represent, feels to me as though it, it’s like…we’re not even there. And in a sense, really, we aren’t there.

Strategy Institute: Thank you so much…

Check out the Patient Experience Forum where we will be gathering to meet and learn from those organisations successfully driving patient experience strategies. Join us and take advantage of the early bird discounts now. Download the full conference agenda.

For more Patient Experience and Healthcare news sign up to our resource centre. 

Key Challenges and Solutions in Patient Experience

Patient Experience Q&A Sessions: Dr. Susan McDonald from Northern Health

Strategy Institute: Okay, so just to start, give us an overview of what you do and the organizational work that you do.

Susan: I’m Dr. Susan McDonald, I’m a family physician for the last 30 years, I’m also the chief medical officer for Northern Health. North Health is one of the 6 health authorities in British Columbia.

Strategy Institute: And so in your opinion what would you say are the 3 main challenges facing Patient Experience?

Susan: Patient Experience, as many other initiatives within the healthcare system, faces challenges, but I think there’s significant momentum that has developed over the last few years to really move this forward. Some of the challenges are common to any other change, there are many stakeholders, patients of course, healthcare practitioners and other individuals who support the healthcare system with respect to working within the hospital in a non-medical capacity and, of course families.

So, being able to ensure that communication is effectively being transmitted to all the different stakeholders is one challenge.  The second, I would say, is capacity. There are many competing priorities for many people and often people say ‘Well, how is this going to affect me? Is this something that I should be embracing? I’m so busy doing something else.’  So, capacity, the ability to have enough time to embrace the changes and to be able to incorporate them into everyday life.

And I would say the third, there’s many challenges but also many opportunities…the third is to make sure that we do get the right feedback, that we are listening, and that we are using the information that is helping to guide us in an effective way.

Strategy Institute: Excellent, and for your particular organization, where would you say you were at in terms of implementing a patient experience model. Are you more towards the planning stage or have you already fully committed to something and really came to this event to improve?

Susan: Yes, very good question. At Northern Health, part of its strategic plan as an organization was always to put significant emphasis on patient-centered care.  There is a variability across the region, Northern Health takes up two thirds of the geography of British Columbia and many communities can be remote, some are not, so I would say that we are in the implementation phase, we did just actually win a provincial award for collaborative solutions in British Columbia for our HIV work and part of the reason behind that is we engaged the communities as well as First Nations Aboriginal Societies, associations as well as communities in our work.

So, we put a lot of emphasis on ensuring that those whose care would be affected were involved. Patients were involved; it was a grassroots type of approach.

Strategy Institute: Excellent, what would you say you’ve gotten out of the conference these past 2 days?

Susan: I think the last 2 days have been very helpful to see the ideas that are coming forth from organizations that have been working towards ensuring that patient centred care is moving forward in their organizations, but also those who are just starting. To hear the questions, to learn from each other but also to be able to teach each other what obstacles might exist, what opportunities, but also to realize that there’s always opportunity to move ahead and to improve the quality of care we provide to our patients and families.

Be sure to check our next Patient Experience conference to ensure you meet patient experience professionals making a difference to Canadian Healthcare. You will also be networking with over 200 delegates and be totally inspired by one of the strongest panel of speakers in Canada.

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Where is the focus in Patient Experience in 2014

Patient Experience Q&A Sessions: Caroline Brereton, Mississagua-Halton Community Care Access Centre

Strategy Institute: Okay, so just to start, just give us an overview of what you do and the organizational work that you do.

Caroline: So, I’m Caroline Brereton and I’m CEO at the Mississagua-Halton Community Care Access Centre and my organization provides care to those who need support in the community, we help place patients into long term care, we help move patients from hospital to home to finish their recovery at home, and we support children in the school, whether it’s children with physical disabilities, physical challenges or mental health or addiction challenges.

Strategy Institute: Okay, excellent, in your opinion what are the three main challenges facing improvement to patient experience?

Caroline: As I was mentioning in my session, one of the really big ones is helping people understand what their journey through the healthcare system will look like. So, preparing them for the next step. And understanding what it means for them to take that next step, so I would say that’s one of the important ones. I think the second one is to understand how we can introduce and leverage technology to help them feel more in control of their journey and be a part of that journey, be actively engaged in that journey and I think while technology is very prominent in healthcare in terms of planning for your next stage in your healthcare journey, self-care, we’ve not done as good a job as we could in terms of the use of technology.

I think the third challenge would be understanding the diversity of the populations that we serve. We often apply a broad lens to our planning in terms of ‘this will work for everyone’ and we have to, I think, be able to customize our programs and our approach more to meet the diverse needs of our population.

Strategy Institute: Definitely, I agree, where would you say your organization is at in terms of implementing an actual patient experience model. Are you guys more towards the entry stage or looking to improve what you already have?

Caroline: Certainly we’re in the implementation phase, in the past year we introduced a new model for support for patients and that model is based on understanding what subsets of our overall population needs, so, we have structured how we deliver our care so that there is more integration of the care team and there is more support for more complex patients, so that means we’ll get to interact with the patient more, we will be in a better position to be a quarterback for that patient, and we know that from a patient experience, the patients are looking for somebody who will be there with them along the journey, helping them to navigate the system, so we’ve re-organized our teams to be able to do that.

The next phase is around implementing standards of care that are focused on enhancing the patient experience, so it was helpful to hear speakers talk about what  they’re doing and how they’re approaching it and, I guess for me what stood out is it’s very much about listening to our patients and their families and hearing what’s important to them, and being as nimble as we can. Part of being nimble is helping patients understand, what they can expect from the system. If we don’t help them understand what they can expect, any change is a real surprise then, but when we can frame the change in terms of what’s happening within the context of what they expected, I think that makes it much easier.

Strategy Institute: Excellent, and so what would you say that you out of the conference for this past two days?

Caroline: I was impressed with the diversity of the attendees at the conference, which confirms for me that we’re all interested in making a difference in the patient experience and we’re all working on similar things and for me, what I heard is very much working with our partners within our organizations, observation might be what still leads to a little bit more work, working across the continuum of care. 

To meet patient experience professionals making a difference to Canadian Healthcare be sure to check our Patient Experience conference. We have one of the strongest panel of speakers in Canada and over 200 delegates to network with.

For more Patient Experience and Healthcare news sign up to our resource centre.

Key Challenges and Solutions in Patient Experience

Patient Experience Q&A Sessions: Petrina McGrath from Saskatoon Health Region

 

Strategy Institute: Okay, so just to start, give us an overview of what you do and the organizational work that you do.

Petrina: So, I’m the Vice President of quality and inter-professional practice at Saskatoon Health Region, Saskatoon Health Region is the largest health region in Saskatchewan, and I provide professional practice, quality and safety and I lead the strategic work on client/family centered care for the organization.

Strategy Institute: What are the 3 main challenges facing patient experience in your organization?

Petrina: I think that that the 3 main challenges around patient experience is actually ensuring that we’re looking at the continuum, so traditionally it’s very easy to get very focused on the acute care side of the silo, so, you now really starting to look at the whole journey of care for a patient-family-resident-client, along the continuum as opposed to looking at their care as episodic care. I think traditionally, most patients’ and families’ care is provided outside of acute care facilities, yet a lot of our time is spent on those acute care facilities.

So, we look at ‘what does client-family-centered care mean outside of the walls?’ and also help with those transitions and those transition points there. I think the other challenge is we’ve been a very provider-driven system, and so, our challenge is to continue to make sure we bring patients and families, (or residents if it’s in long term care or clients in home care), to the table, and to have them be part of decision-making at every level of the organization and we’re seeing that happen we’re seeing amazing results from that…

But you know, we’re challenging the status quo around that and it requires us to really push our per-conceived assumptions, that’s always work to just continue to work to do.

Strategy Institute: Where do you think you’re at in terms of the Patient Experience model?

Petrina: I actually think we’re in a really good place and actually the conference has been great in kind of reiterating to me that we’re in the right place for some best practices and yet, there’s lots of pearls for me to take back.

So right now we have over 140 client-family advisors, resident advisors and we have 14 councils that are working, so they are councils that have patients and families and clinicians together and they’re very much working councils. They don’t just sit and talk, they’re doing actual projects and work – we have them everywhere from ICU council to home care. We’ve just started an aboriginal people’s council because as you heard in the conference, sometimes the way we structure things does not meet our immigrant or our diversity of our population and they have a harder time, maybe the way we structure it having a voice, so we’ve intentionally created an aboriginal people’s council and we’re seeing some great, exciting work coming out of that group as well.

Strategy Institute: What are you hoping to get out of the conference? What have you gotten out of it so far?

Petrina: So, you know the one great thing about a conference like this is just the connections of other people doing great work, so it both is validating in some ways when you’re hearing people talk to say “Oh we’re doing that and that is a best practice and we’re doing well in that.” And also to say “Oh, they’re really doing something different” and how can I take that back and see how it can enhance what we’re doing – so connecting with other people, so that I know I got contacts afterwards to call up and learn more from and validating what we’re already doing and then really seeing other possibilities that I can take back and engage with my team on.

To meet patient experience professionals making a difference to Canadian Healthcare be sure to check our Patient Experience conference. We have one of the strongest panel of speakers in Canada and over 200 delegates to network with.

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Where is the focus in Patient Experience in 2014

Patient Experience Q&A Sessions: Ted Ball from Quantum Transformation Technologies

Strategy Institute: Okay, so just to start, give us an overview of what you do and the organizational work that you do.

Ted: So, my name is Ted Ball, I’m Transformation Coach with Quantum Transformation Technologies.  And transformation is a word that we toss around quite a bit; what it means is moving from a caterpillar to a butterfly, so if you look at the DNA of the caterpillar the DNA the butterfly, it’s a major change so what this conference is about is how do we make a dramatic change fundamental structural change in the design health care system in a way that will revolutionize the patient experience.

Strategy Institute: Fantastic, thank you and I know you’re involved in obviously different aspects of this transformation and of the patient experience, so what do you think are the major issues people are facing in this industry while trying to undergo this transformation?

Ted: Literally understanding that it’s all about the patient, what we have is a provider-centered design system and what we’re talking about is a major revolution that is absolutely focused on redesigning for the patient which is not only good for the patient but in fact has been demonstrated to cost about 30 percent less money. So given the healthcare system in Canada, is going to be traumatized by less money in the near future, patient-centered care has proven to be about 30 percent less cost. So as we have to reduce costs, shifting to this kind of a system is going to be much more economical.

Strategy Institute: Since you’ve been here for a day and a half now, how would describe the overall experience of the event, how have you found it?

Art: This event has been fantastically inspirational. The speakers have all been extraordinary, the kind of research that’s been presented is leading edge in the world. I think it’s inculcated a sense revolutionary spirit in three hundred people that are here.

Check out the Patient Experience Forum where we will be gathering to meet and learn from those organisations successfully driving patient experience strategies. Join us and take advantage of the early bird discounts now. Download the full conference agenda.

For more Patient Experience and Healthcare news sign up to our monthly updates.

Key Challenges and Solutions in Patient Experience