April 26, 2012
Leading change, gaining new skills, and making safety a priority aren't easy tasks. But for many Prairie North Health Region employees, taking on the hard jobs is just part of putting the patient and family at the centre of care and continuously improving delivery of high-quality health care for Prairie North residents.
A number of Prairie North employees have recently been recognized provincially and regionally for their accomplishments. “It's inspiring to work with people who see a problem or a need – be it within their team, their community, or even themselves – and set out to change,” said David Fan, CEO of Prairie North Health Region. “The work that has been recognized is varied, but the common thread is that Prairie North patients and their families benefit from the enthusiasm, initiative, and passion of these employees.”
- Prairie North Health Region's Outpatient Stroke Rehabilitation Clinics were recognized with a SAHO Green Ribbon Award for innovative quality improvement, in the category of Seeing the System with Fresh Eyes. The award was presented at the Inspire Health Care Quality Summit in Saskatoon on April 17. Additionally, six Prairie North teams were selected and presented their quality improvement stories at the Inspire conference.
- Leeanne Koshykowski, a special care aide at River Heights Lodge in North Battleford, is WorkSafe Saskatchewan's 2012 Safe Worker Award winner. Koshykowski championed a program to get power cords and call bell cords out of the way and secure them to the walls, improving safety for residents, staff, volunteers, and visitors.
- Dianne Lauritzen, a social worker with Child and Youth Services in North Battleford, was named Social Worker of the Year – Battlefords Branch in March. Her nominator described her as “very compassionate, caring, and a true advocate.”
- Candace Brown, a licensed practical nurse (LPN) in Cut Knife, completed the Saskatchewan Institute of Health Leaders (SIHL) program. Brown's group project focused on an interdisciplinary approach to achieving healthy weight and may be viewed at http://www.gotohealthy.ca/.
“With more than 3,100 people working for Prairie North, I know these accolades and achievements are the tip of the iceberg,” Fan added. “So much good work is done every day because of the many employees who do their best for each patient they see and each job they set out to do.”
Green Ribbon Award and Health Quality Summit Presentations
Prairie North Health Region's Green Ribbon Award winning project addressed gaps that stroke patients had identified in their care. For example, they hadn't received adequate follow up after hospitalization, they didn't know where to go for help, they often felt isolated, and many were not referred for outpatient stroke rehabilitation or education.
To eliminate these gaps, a team of professionals in speech and language therapy, occupational therapy, physical therapy, chronic disease management nursing, acquired brain injury coordination, and social work came together to provide weekly stroke rehabilitation clinics. Together, the team provides outpatients and their families with one-stop services, education and problem solving. The team also ensures regular report-backs to physicians. The number of clinics has increased based on demand throughout the Region.
Betsy Brown, regional acquired brain injury coordinator; Debra Baldinus, chronic disease clinical nurse educator; and Kim Larsson, physiotherapy lead,accepted the award on behalf of the entire team.
SAHO's Green Ribbon Awards honour innovative quality improvement projects by SAHO member organizations. Fourteen Green Ribbon applications were submitted this year by SAHO member organizations from across the province. Four Green Ribbon Awards and two Honourable Mentions were presented.
Six Prairie North teams were chosen to present their quality improvement projects and stories to the Inspire conference:
- Shared Medical Appointments: Lessons Learned from Customer Participation
Dr. Jim Johnson, North Battleford Medical Clinic
Michelle Grasby, Clinical Nurse Educator
- The Role of the Registered Nurse in Improving the Patient Experience in Primary Health Care
Charlotte Hamilton, Primary Health Care Manager
Annette Viljoen, Physician, Meadow Lake Associate Clinic
Melanie Bauman, Registered Nurse, Case Manager
- Improving Hand Hygiene: A Team Effort
Monica Yonan, Patient Quality of Care Measurement Coordinator/Educator
- Expanding to Cardiac Rehabilitation
Joan Wentworth, Manager Chronic Disease Management
Brendan Pikaluk, Exercise Specialist
- Coordinated Outpatient Stroke Rehab Clinics
Betsy Brown, Acquired Brain Injury Regional Coordinator
Joan Wentworth, Manager Chronic Disease Management
- Urban Low Income Diabetes Risk Assessment
Dianne Million, Clinical Nurse Educator
Nicole Braun, Project Coordinator, Canadian Diabetes Association
Theresa Bacchetto, Registered Dietitian/Clinical Lead
More information about the quality summit can be found at www.qualitysummit.ca.
Safe Worker Award
The WorkSafe Saskatchewan Safe Worker Award celebrates workers who go beyond the expectations of their position to make their workplace safer and increase safety awareness for others. Leeanne Koshykowski's idea was cost effective, quickly implemented, and had a big impact on slip, trip and fall injuries. Her prevention advocacy has shifted the safety culture at her workplace – workers talk safety and are encouraged to suggest new safety ideas.
Making the workplace safe is an ongoing commitment that contributes directly to our employees' ability to provide safe patient care. Visit www.wcbsask.ca for more information about the program.
Social Worker of the Year
Dianne Lauritzen has worked for the Health Region since 1997 and is the current president of the local branch of the Saskatchewan Association of Social Workers.
Health Leadership Training
The SIHL program brings healthcare professionals from all disciplines and levels together to foster leadership potential, skills, and the creation of a leadership community that works together to promote, support and sustain good health. The program is the first of its kind in Canada, with registration limited to 40 students per course. The program is coordinated by the Centre for Continuing Education, University of Regina.
For more information or to arrange interviews, contact:
Prairie North Health Region
306-446-6002 or 306-441-6723 (cell)