Celebrating the quality of care at the Annual General Meeting

Celebrating its first full year as a stroke centre just one of the topics at this year’s Annual General Meeting 

July 2 – The end of 2014/15 marked Guelph General Hospital’s (GGH) successful first year as a stroke centre.

Its median “door-to-needle” time (time from when the patient arrives to the time the patient receives the clot-busting drug) was 59 minutes. That’s under the 60-minute provincial target which is important because time is of the essence when identifying and treating a stroke. The faster that blood flow can be restored to the impacted portion of the brain, the more function the patient is likely to regain. The success of GGH’s new program along with many other achievements was celebrated at the Hospital’s Annual General Meeting Tuesday.

Enhanced stroke care wasn’t the only change at GGH last year. It was also a time of leadership transition. In September, long-serving President and CEO, Richard Ernst, retired and the reins were passed to Marianne Walker. She says she has felt very welcomed as part of a great team as soon as she arrived.

“I feel privileged to be working with our amazing people who are so committed to giving their best each day and improving the lives of people who look to us for health care."

For the Hospital’s Board of Directors and leadership, it was a busy year covering April 1, 2014 to March 31, 2015. There was recruiting the new CEO, preparing for a new strategic plan and renewing GGH’s Vision, Mission and Values. Throughout the fall and winter, over 600 hospital and community stakeholders were consulted to provide feedback into the new strategic plan and Mission, Vision and Values.

“The feedback received was very helpful in shaping where we need to go in the future to ensure that the health care needs of our community are addressed,” says Bob Carter, GGH’s new Board Chair who takes over from John Core. “Our new strategic plan that takes us out three to four years was approved and detailed operational plans will be developed, communicated and implemented over the next couple of months.”

The Board also reflected on the outstanding achievements from the past year.

  • GGH continues to be a top performer for Emergency Department wait times. At the end of the 2014 calendar year, the Hospital ranked eighth in the Province and tops when compared to similarly sized hospitals. The Emergency Department team has been invited to share its strategies for success as part of a provincial initiative related to access to care.
  • As part of the IDEAS (Improving & Driving Excellence Across Sectors) program, GGH’s Birthing Room team achieved best practice related to the appropriate timing of inducing births when necessary. This improves outcomes for women and their babies.
  • GGH’s MRI turn-around time is one of the best in the province and patients continually comment positively about the staff’s caring approach. 
  • GGH has committed to an innovative nuclear medicine program. It will allow patients to have nuclear scanning performed without having to leave the Hospital.
  • Despite having its base budget frozen for the past three years, Guelph General Hospital achieved a balanced budget without decreases in services.
  • Over the past year GGH strengthen its partnership with the Guelph Family Health Team. Together, they are working to improve the transitions of care of patients being discharged to home.
  • GGH renewed and strengthened its Information Technology Systems (IT) partnership with Wellington Health Care Alliance. Together, they have developed a road map to further integrate the IT systems to improve patient information flow. 

 “The Board and I want to thank all of the staff, professional staff, volunteers and the Foundation Board for their ongoing commitment and support that resulted in another successful year,” Walker says. “We look forward to working together in achieving outstanding results in 2015/16.”