Monday September 01, 2014

Quality council honours Sunrise


Saskatchewan’s Health Quality Council will honour two departments of the Sunrise Health Region May 6.

The Crisis Assessment Team at Mental Health and Addiction Services is being recognized for reducing a lengthy waiting list to meet provincial triage and response time targets, as well as, providing service to more clients in a timely way that meets the clients’ needs.

Gary Shepherd, director of Mental Health and addictions, said he was proud.

“It’s a great team,” he said. “They continue to do more and more every day and they’re up to the task.”

When they embarked on the project, it was a two pronged approach. The first part of clearing the backlog they accomplished by rolling up their sleeves and applying some good old-fashioned elbow grease. Shepherd said there were some long days.

The second part was a matter of applying a triage system of a front-line crisis assessment team made up of both mental health and addictions people. The importance of having expertise in both areas, Shepherd said, is that mental health and addictions are frequently co-occurring issues.

The Department of Pharmacy Services earned its accolade by achieving a goal of $76,000 in savings on inventory ordered and stocked. The team also reduced expired inventory by 84 per cent.

Lawrence Chomos, chair of the Sunrise Board of Directors, pointed out at the monthly board meeting April 30, that the region had picked up two out of eight awards, 25 per cent of what was available for the whole province.

“Kudos to our Sunrise folks because [the awards] are not easy to come by,” he said.

The Health Quality Council is an arms-length organization created by the provincial government in 2002 after Ken Fyke who headed up Saskatchewan’s Commission on Medicare recommended it in his final report.

After two years of consultation, the council produced, between 2004 and 2008, numerous reports that demonstrated quality problems across sectors and regions.

Since then the organization has been working with health regions to promote a culture of qaulity improvement and is now overseeing the implementation of the health system’s new Lean methodology for continuous improvement.

The May 6 Health Care Quality Summit and Awards at TCU Place in Saskatoon is the 4th Annual edition of the event.



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