Good morning, TeamUHN!

It is a pleasure to connect with you across care, research, and education through this weekly CEO update – all in service of A Healthier World.  

Key reminders and updates

  • Safety and wellbeing of patients, staff and the community is our main priority, so UHN has now implemented its COVID-19 Vaccination Status and Testing Policy. The policy is available here (UHN Intranet > POLICIES > Human Resources > COVID-19 Vaccine). As per the policy, all UHN employees and physicians must report either their COVID-19 vaccination status, or their decision to participate in the home COVID-19 testing program to Health ServicesStarting August 9 ​, individuals who fail the screening attestation at UHN entrances — requiring all members of TeamUHN to have either received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, or have tested negative on a rapid-test within 48 hours of their scheduled shift — will not be allowed to enter any UHN sites. As with all staff who fail screening, they are to report to their managers the inability to come into work and notify Health Services. Learners, contractors and volunteers are currently excluded from this process, but stay tuned as we're looking at how best to included them in the near future. For full details, please refer to the COVID-19 Update sent Friday, July 23. 
  • Advisory Board membership for all UHN. Since 2018, UHN has had an organizational membership with Advisory Board — an international think tank that provides members access to information on leading health care practices from around the world. All UHN physicians and staff are eligible to register for this resource free of charge. As UHN heads into the last year of our contract with Advisory Board, we'd like to ensure teams are aware of the resources and services and know how to access them. We will evaluate the need to continue our membership following this year.
  • Congratulations to Jonathan Irish on his appointment as Vice - President, Clinical, for Cancer Care Ontario.This past week Matt Anderson (President & CEO, Ontario Health) made the following appointments after searches for all positions:
    • Elaine Meertens, Vice-President, Cancer Programs, Ontario Health, Cancer Care Ontario
    • Jonathan Irish, Vice-President, Clinical, Cancer Programs, Ontario Health, Cancer Care Ontario
    • Linda Rabeneck, Vice-President, Prevention and Cancer Control, Ontario Health, Cancer Care Ontario
    • David Kaplan, Vice-President, Quality
    • Paul Kurdyak, Vice-President, Clinical, Mental Health and Addictions Centre of Excellence

    Jonathan will continue his role in the Head and Neck Surgery department at UHN while assuming these new responsibilities for Ontario Health.

What happened at the Senior Management Forum meeting

UHN's Senior Management Forum (SMF) includes senior leaders from across the organization and programs and serves as a monthly opportunity to discuss strategic initiatives underway at UHN. The last SMF meeting was held on June 24, 2021.

Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN) Health Transformation Update

  • Background: Earlier this year, UHN announced a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN) that aims to improve health outcomes, with a focus on cardiac health and treatment, for people throughout the NAN territory. A presentation was made to SMF on progress to date.
  • Who presented? Ovide Mercredi (Health Transformation Lead & Negotiator – NAN), Georgina Lentz (Director of Health Transformation), Paula Vangel (Senior Policy Advisor – NAN).
    • Attending: Michael Anderson (Director, UHN Indigenous Health Program), Ashley Migwans (Manager, UHN Indigenous Health Program), Heather Ross (Director, Peter Munk Cardiac Centre) and Steven Superfina (Peter Munk Cardiac Centre).
  • What do I need to know? Following the MOU, the Peter Munk Cardiac Centre has been working closely with NAN's Health Transformation group to improve the approach to cardiac health and treatment for people throughout the NAN territory. This important work is being done under the guidance and leadership of NAN so that methods are culturally sensitive and appropriate, while improving accessibility and cardiac care.

Synapse Update 

  • Background: Synapse is the process guiding the clinical transformation clouding the implementation of a new Hospital Information System (HIS). With a confirmed go-live date of June 4, 2022 a singular focus from leadership across UHN is required to ensure that the preparation work is done for a successful 'go-live' on June 4. A great deal of energy and time will be required from clinicians across UHN to support the implementation, so leaders have been asked to ensure that Synapse continues to be a top priority. 
  • Who presented? SMF received an update summary from Synapse underlining the time frame and requests.
  • What do I need to know? In August, Synapse will shift to System and User Readiness and the order set scope will be finalized. Key decisions will also be wrapped up in August, and a picture of operational resource requirements will be built for new and ongoing work streams. TeamUHN is asked to help preserve organizational capacity for Synapse work, ensure that you are familiar with who the Synapse Champions are in your area, and view the Readiness and Engagement Forums – either live or the recording, which are posted to the Synapse site here.

Overview of last week

Quality of Care Committee Summary

  • Background: The UHN Quality of Care Committee (QCC) is Co-Chaired by Emily Musing (Vice-President, Clinical; Chief Patient Safety Officer) and Lucas Chartier (Medical Director, Quality & Safety) and its mandate is to study, assess or evaluate the provision of health care with a view to improving or maintaining its quality, including conducting reviews of Serious Safety Events (SSEs).
    • At the July meeting, the QCC reviewed the findings from a Root Cause Analysis conducted on a patient safety event that occurred in the Ajmera Transplant Centre. Although this event was not classified as a SSE, it resulted in the advancement of a new and improved standard of practice both within UHN and internationally. Specifically, the learning related to further mitigation of COVID-19 infection transmission from organ donation thereby informing international transplant guidelines.
  • Who presented? Laura Pozzobon (Patient Safety & Quality Improvement Specialist), Joanne Zee (Clinical Director) and Atul Humar (Program Medical Director).
  • What do I need to know? Reporting potential safety events and participating in event reviews are important avenues for learning and quality improvement. You can report a safety event by using the Safety Event Reporting System. We appreciate TeamUHN's continued commitment to speak up for safety.

Closing notes

  • Sunday, August 1  is Emancipation Day. ​Emancipation Day is formally recognized across Canada as the day enslavement of African peoples in all British colonies came to an end. It was through the tireless efforts of the enslaved and free status Africans, as well as Black and white abolitionists, that emancipation became a reality. Abolitionists and others who struggled against slavery, including those who arrived in Upper and Lower Canada by the Underground Railroad, have historically celebrated Emancipation Day. Please join the Ontario Black History Society, a UHN Partner, for their free virtual event  on Sunday , August 1  at 6:00  p.m., featuring music, historical facts and landmarks. Register for the event here via Eventbrite. For more information, please contact Zainab Jafri(zainab.jafri@uhn.ca) or Jacqueline Silvera (jacqueline.silvera@uhn.ca).
  • Wednesday,  July 28  is World Hepatitis Day. A silent and dangerous disease, Hepatitis C is one of the deadliest strains of the virus, claiming lives of around 400,000 people per year, according to the World Health Organization – and this number is expected to climb after the pandemic. UHN's Viral Hepatitis Care Network (VIRCAN) has experienced a steep drop of over 50 per cent in people being screened for Hepatitis C, which has also been observed across Ontario. Screening is essential in order for people to access early treatment to a curable disease, and prevent severe complications like cirrhosis and liver cancer. Stay tuned for this week's UHN News story for World Hepatitis Day, and visit the Toronto Centre for Liver Disease – Francis Family Liver Clinic and VIRCAN websites for more information.​

Feedback?

Your feedback is welcome and valued. Please reply directly to me or leave anonymous feedback here.​

Have a good week,

Kevin​​​

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