General Express February 2017

Accreditation coming soon

There was a lot of interest at the recent Accreditation display outside the Bistro. Much of the information provided has now been gathered onto a page on our Intranet.

Every two to four years surveyors from Accreditation Canada visit hospitals, long-term care facilities and other healthcare organizations to assess performance against national standards of excellence. This year, surveyors will be visiting Guelph General Hospital the week of April 24-27.

In 2013, GGH received full accreditation with Exemplary Standing from Accreditation Canada – something only 1 in 5 organizations achieve. We are hoping to do it again this year! “Get ready to shine!” is our theme as we prepare to brag about the great things we do at GGH. This will be our opportunity to once again take measure of our Hospital as a whole compared to nearly 2,000 national standards of excellence.

What does Accreditation Canada focus on? 

Accreditation Canada’s overall focus is on delivering high quality, safe and efficient care in an environment that puts the patients and family at the centre of the care and services provided. Their standards encourage respectful, compassionate, culturally appropriate and competent care that responds to the needs, values, beliefs and preferences of patients and their family members. It means working in a true partnership with the patient and family to meet their healthcare needs.

How will the Surveyors know if we are meeting the standards?

During the on-site survey, Surveyors from Accreditation Canada will be conducting “tracers” to follow the path of a patient or process. Surveyors will be reviewing policies, procedures, guidelines and patient charts and then going out to speak with staff, physicians, volunteers, and patients and families to see if the care and services we are providing meet the standards. 

At GGH, we have already embraced the Accreditation Canada’s focus. We have moved away from thinking of healthcare as something we do “to” patients to seeing our patients as active partners in their care. Our Mission statement reflects this shift - “To provide the highest quality of care and experience for patients and their families.” 

Living our Strategic Directions - Support our exceptional team

Every issue there'll be an article about one of the initiatives either underway or completed that are supporting our four new Strategic Directions. As a reminder, they are:

Lab staff stand in front of their departmental "huddle board." The Huddle process supports peer-to-peer interactions where staff are involved in decision making and collaborating with other team members to solve issues.

Through our strategic planning work, a priority has been set to create a standardized approach as to how the departmental huddles look and feel. In addition, structure has been provided to our morning rounds through the use of a status sheet. Both of these initiatives are being deployed in waves across the organization.

The status sheet is a daily conversation between two people focused on the business of the unit. It helps Directors and their leaders to understand what is coming at the team each day, to see trends and issues and deal with emerging problems before they need an urgent response. Our leaders want to know that our staff and patients are safe, we have the right skill mix on our units and we can foresee issues to be better prepared. The status sheet is also a place to reflect questions that are aligned to our chosen strategic initiatives. For example, who on the unit is at risk of falling today? What are the plans in place to make sure they do not? 
From the status sheet often comes concerns and improvement ideas which are brought forward to the huddle board for team problem solving. The Huddle process supports peer-to-peer interactions where staff are involved in decision making and collaborating with other team members to solve issues. Headlines are shared, staff are recognized and improvement ideas are shared and worked on. The boards will evolve and become the place where we track progress of our initiatives with charts and graphs to show what we’re measuring as well as the frequency of occurrence.
Huddles are a way to continue to build on the amazing teamwork that already exists across the hospital and to provide a way for all staff to be involved in sharing ideas for ways to improve and working on those ideas together.


l-r Devon Metcalf, Infection Control, Dwayne Shellswell, Facilities and Sue MacNeil representing Housekeeping inspect a supply room. Each brings a unique perspective to the initiative.

Joining perspectives to help identify issues that may otherwise go unnoticed

In an exciting, new collaborative initiative between Environmental Services, Facilities and Infection Prevention and Control, monthly environmental unit audits will be conducted to identify and address any building, surface, or equipment issues that need to be fixed, replaced or in some way addressed.  Staff present on the unit will be engaged for feedback to help identify areas that need to be reviewed.  The audits also represent an opportunity for patient engagement as each patient room will be audited and the patients and families will have the opportunity to give their own feedback as well. 

Privacy Matters

We are all involved in protecting patient privacy. We need to log off each time we walk away from a computer. This will ensure no one else can access information under our password. If the computer is in a location with public and patient access, this will prevent unlawful access. Together we can support a respectful work place.


Digital Order Sets go live

In January, Digital Order Sets became available for completion by Hospitalists through the Entry Point platform for a select number of orders. They include the first wave of Patient Care Orders based on the Provincial Quality Based Procedure handbooks:
  • Congestive Heart Failure 
  • Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
  • Stroke
In addition, all pre-printed patient care orders used by the Hospitalist service can be accessed through Entry Point for Digital completion. These pre-printed orders will also remain available on the intranet. Digital order sets also help improve patient safety and quality of care with clear, legible orders. This is a provincial project in which the Waterloo Wellington LHIN decided to participate. The province is hoping to have 98 hospitals in the province using these QBP order sets and our LHIN is part of the first wave.

Representatives from Entry Point were on hand to celebrate the launch. With them are those from GGH who were involved with the project (l-r) Laurie Williamson, Dr. Karen Slatkovsky, Heather Chase and Laura Zinger. 

The Biomedical Department is working diligently behind the scenes

Our expert Biomedical Team includes Reza Safari (left) and Miguel Naveaz. They ensure our clinical assets are ready for duty, at any moment. 

Today’s medical care relies heavily on sophisticated devices, technologies and information systems. This equipment helps us to provide the high quality care for which we are known. At the same time, the technology is highly complex. All of the devices must be carefully integrated so that they function seamlessly and that the medical information required by healthcare providers is available when needed.
Fortunately, our hospital has a partner, Aramark Canada, which has the expertise and resources to keep pace with the changing healthcare environment and rapid evolution of medical equipment. Our Biomedical Department currently manages over 2,500 pieces of clinical equipment. 
Integral to this service are the operational progress reports that include:
  • Preventative Maintenance Reports
  • Corrective Maintenance Reports
  • Trending Reports
An exciting new report coming soon will be Equipment Life Cycle reports and Equipment Replacement Forecast reports. This will provide data to our leadership to support the capital request process.

It's the storm before the calm....

With just days to go before one of Guelph's premier fundraising events, Black Tie Bingo, our Foundation is a buzz of activity. After years of holding one of Guelph's most successful events, staff go about their business like a well-oiled machine. Nothing stresses them out, or does it...?

A true picture of calm, President and CEO, Suzanne Bone, attends to some last-minute details. Senior Development Officer, Linda Craig, is almost Zen-like as she gathers late additions to the silent auction. Holding down the fort (and silent auction items) are (l-r) Elizabeth Steward, Deb de Boer and Jennifer Duggan.

Motivated to make a nomination?

The Foundation's weekly "Monday Motivator" on its Facebook page continues to be very popular. It was originally conceived as a means to inspire support of the Hospital by shining a light on the amazing staff who provide exceptional care and experience to patients and their families. Most recently, it evolved to include volunteers and donors who in a very real way also have an impact patient care at GGH.

The Foundation has proudly published 78 posts and continues to make the rounds through the Hospital and through their network of donors to identify inspiring stories.
The Foundation now invites GGH staff to submit #MondayMotivator nominee suggestions. Please email them to Elizabeth Stewart at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Be sure to include the individual’s name, their department and/or supervisor’s name as well as a sentence or two about why you suggested them.

Lights, camera, action!!
Recently, the Foundation had a camera crew and many volunteers come in on a Sunday to film a promotional video. It will highlight the direct impact that donations have on the Hospital and the care we provide. The video should be ready in the Spring. That's a wrap!!