This year, PHSA was honoured in six BC Health Care Award categories recognizing collaborative partnerships, innovation, patient-centred care practices and delivery of exceptional care.
Congratulations to BC Cancer, BC Emergency Health Services (BCEHS), PHSA Workforce Management Solutions, Sunny Hill Children Health Centre and Glenn Braithwaite, a member of BCEHS on these amazing accomplishments.
Gold Apple Award: Collaborative Solutions – BC Cancer partners to support Indigenous cultural safety in cancer care through the Indigenous Cancer Strategy
Indigenous peoples in British Columbia are more at risk for some of the most commonly diagnosed cancers. They are also less likely to survive a cancer diagnosis than non-Indigenous people. Recognizing this, BC Cancer, First Nations Health Authority, Métis Nation British Columbia, and the BC Association of Aboriginal Friendship Centres set out to develop the Indigenous Cancer Strategy to improve Indigenous cancer outcomes by addressing all steps of the cancer journey, from prevention and treatment, through to survivorship and end-of-life care.
This approach is unique in the province, and second of its kind in the country, with Indigenous communities leading changes in cancer care in keeping with First Nations and Métis priorities.
The end goal of the strategy is cancer services that align with Indigenous priorities resulting in fewer new cases of cancer through healthy living; earlier detection through culturally safe cancer screening programs; culturally safe cancer care and support for Indigenous people, families and communities throughout the entire journey; support for the end-of-life journeys, perspectives and wishes of Indigenous peoples; and well documented and understood Indigenous cancer journeys.
"We recognize the unique cancer challenges and treatment outcome disparities faced by Indigenous people and we are working with our partners to ensure the delivery of culturally safe cancer care throughout the province," said Dr. Malcolm Moore, president, BC Cancer. "This strategy is a demonstration of our commitment to actions that directly improve the cancer experience for all Indigenous people; from prevention through treatment and survivorship, we are committed to continuing collaboration that improves the cancer journey for Indigenous cancer patients, for their families and their communities."
Award of Merit: Collaborative Solutions – BC Emergency Health Services (BCEHS) works to streamline ambulance turnaround times at hospitals
In partnership with Fraser Health, BCEHS created a standardized system for emergency department staff and ambulance paramedics to work more collaboratively and apply improvements in managing patient offloading and triage.
By building collaborative exit strategies, ambulance turnaround times were reduced by more than 50 per cent, and BCEHS became the first ambulance service in Canada to achieve an average 30 minute turnaround at hospitals.
Reducing ambulance turnaround time not only frees up paramedics to respond to other emergency calls, but also provides patients with faster treatment from hospital staff. The strategy also ensured that patient-centered handovers between BCEHS ambulance paramedics and Fraser Health staff are being completed in a timely manner that is safe and values mutual respect, caring, and trust.
"If it wasn't for true collaboration we would continue to be struggling with long wait times turning over patients in hospital emergency rooms," said Wendy Machana, BCEHS director of Patient Care Delivery, Fraser District. "Everyone stepped up to communicate, work together and be accountable. It took a whole team working across departments and agencies to make this happen. Thank you. The patients thank you."
Gold Apple Award: Dianna Mah-Jones Award of Excellence in Person-Centred Care – Sunny Hill Health Centre's International Seating Symposium brings people together to improve seating and mobility for those with disabilities
Named in honour of Dianna Mah-Jones, a former Provincial Health Care Hero of the BC Health Care Awards, this new category celebrates a team or project that makes use of leading practices to improve care for patients, residents or clients by focusing on the needs of the person rather than the needs of the system or service.
The Positioning and Mobility Team at Sunny Hill Health Centre for Children was recognized for their leading role in organizing the International Seating Symposium to improve the mobility, comfort and quality of life for people with disabilities. Established in 1982, the event brings together clinicians, researchers, exhibitors and patients to foster an exchange of ideas and create a network focused to inspire enhancements in rehabilitation equipment and technology. The symposium has grown from a local to global event, bringing together over 1,100 professionals from 26 countries at its 2018 symposium in March.
"Our team is very proud to be given this award, especially as an inaugural recipient of the Dianna Mah-Jones Award," said Maureen Story, physical therapist of the Positioning and Mobility Team at Sunny Hill. "Dianna was passionate in sharing evidence based best practices through knowledge translation and we are humbled that our work on the International Seating Symposium has been recognized in the same spirit."
Award of Merit: Top Innovation – PHSA Workforce Management Solutions addresses challenge of notifying clinical employees of available shifts through QuickCall
QuickCall is a feature designed and developed by the Workforce Management Solutions team and used by centralized staffing offices. It automates the calling of clinical staff for available relief shifts that have an immediate need to be filled to maintain patient care delivery through interactive voice, SMS/text and email communications. It has also proven to be valuable in reducing errors and saving time from manual dialling and during catastrophic emergencies like the BC wildfires and the opioid crisis in notifying staff about immediate need for urgent assistance.
The feature has been fully integrated into Workbrain, PHSA's scheduling and timekeeping system, and is now used by one-third of all PHSA employees including nurses, facilities staff (e.g.,unit clerks), health sciences staff, paramedics, dispatchers and communities staff.
"The goal of QuickCall was to leverage technology and deliver a solution to address the challenges faced by our clinical employees," explained Nurinder Singh, executive director, PHSA Workforce Management Solutions. "We've changed the way and the speed at which we do business. QuickCall facilitates getting the right employee at the right place and at the right time, improving patient care and ultimately, adding value across the health care system. These are certainly exciting times as we focus on new mediums to interact and exchange information with staff through automation and innovation."
Gold Apple Award: PHSA and Provincial Health Care Hero – Glenn Braithwaite (BCEHS) goes above and beyond in saving others
Glenn Braithwaite, a district supervisor with BC Emergency Health Services, is described by many as kind, compassionate and selfless in helping others. His established career at BCEHS is matched by accounts of his heroic actions and the numerous accolades he's received in recognition of his outstanding commitment to patients, colleagues and the community.
In one incident, Glenn spearheaded the emergency response for a girl who, as the result of an ATV accident had become impaled on a tree. It was a difficult search and rescue requiring an air lift and complicated extraction to keep the girl alive. Had it not been for Glenn's leadership and strong clinical understanding of the patient's needs, she would not have survived.
On another occasion, Glenn was working an extra shift as a duty supervisor in Vancouver when a cluster of 9-1-1 calls were received. Glenn quickly realized that the calls were in response to overdoses related to one cocaine purchase. Eleven lives were saved that day thanks, in part, to Glenn's clinical and leadership abilities.
Glenn's support of his staff have not gone unnoticed. He has gone out of his way on more than one occasion to provide support to his colleagues alongside the BCEHS Critical Incident Stress Management Program when some of them have worked their most difficult days.
"On behalf of my paramedic supervisor colleagues, I proudly accept this award for the exceptional work that you all do," said Glenn. "I am inspired daily by your limitless ability to support our paramedics by ensuring their health and safety is never jeopardized as they go about saving hundreds of lives each and every day; this is what matters the most to every paramedic supervisor at the end of our shifts. Thank you."
Presented by the Health Employers Association of BC, the BC Health Care Awards celebrate excellence and innovation in BC's health care community by recognizing deserving teams that are improving health care in the province and individuals whose actions inspire those around them. Award categories recognize innovative health models, workplace health initiatives, collaborative problem-solving and outstanding individual achievements. View videos of some of our winners below:
Congratulations once again to all our winners! Thank you for your immense contributions and service to PHSA, our patients and families.