All About Estates

Doing Things Differently

The Health Innovation Collaborative (HIC) is a three year project supported by The Green Shield Canada Foundation . Under the helm of Sarah Saso, the executive director, funding was provided to bring major community based organizations to collaborate to improve the lives of seniors. The goal of the project was to address ‘the idea of care coordination to keep people living in their homes as long as possible. The goal was to see if by working together, over three years, we could change current outcomes and help seniors live with their conditions in the comfort of their own homes.’

Last week, I had the pleasure of attending their review/feedback session to the community at large. It was a wonderful morning which included highlights from the collaborators including:
Alzheimers Society Toronto, Bridgepoint Active Healthcare, Centre for Global eHealth Innovation, Sprint Senior Care and St. Michael’s Hospital. It also included panel discussions with the very talented Gordon Pinsent and his daughter and son in law as well as two gentleman who shared their own experiences on both sides of the caregiving-caregiver relationship and Judy Steed, an award winning journalist and author who wrote a book on this ‘collaborative approach to improving care for seniors’.
Each of the five organizations showcased their work. The underlying theme achieved through this collaboration were projects that helped to keep seniors safely in their own homes.
1) Alzheimers Society focused on developing on-line dementia care training for Personal Support Workers (PSW’s).
2) Bridgepoint was able to grow and enhance their Health Gateway called Bridge2Health, a consumer database ‘designed to support patients and caregivers in the transition from hospital to home.’
3) Centre for Global eHealth Innovation. Dr. Alex Jadad spoke about his concept of health which is ‘the ability of individuals or communities to adapt and self-manage in the face of physical, mental or social challenge’. His vision included the use of technology and a web based tool kit to address those families living with chronic health care needs. Enter Health eConcierge.
4) Sprint Senior Care and House Calls under the leadership of Dr. Mark Nowaczynski has been able to see and treat isolated seniors in their own homes who otherwise would completely fall through the cracks or have countless admissions into emergency departments.
5) St. Michael’s had been studying the Virtual Ward and for the 3rd year of the project turned their attention to GEMINI (General Medicine Inpatient registry) which focused on better understanding the needs of the ‘frail and medically complex patients’ and frequent ER users.

Congrats to Greenshields for having the vision and funding available to bring 5 terrific organizations together and have them collaborate for the greater good of our older residents.

Interestingly enough care management and health care navigation was identified as being key to helping seniors better access and use our resources appropriately. As readers will appreciate, I am glad to see geriatric care management having a greater role in the Canadian healthcare landscape.

About Audrey Miller
Email: About: Audrey Miller, Managing Director of Elder Caring Inc. has over 25 years social work and rehabilitation experience working with older individuals and their families. She advises the financial, insurance, legal and business communities regarding elder care issues. Audrey is a recognized expert in her field.