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Ontario announces healthcare award winners

TORONTO – The Ontario government has named six winners at the Celebrating Innovations in Healthcare Expo 2007 Awards, Health and Long-Term Care Minister George Smitherman announced. “We are proud to honour these six winning organizations for their innovation, dedication to strengthening our public healthcare system and improving access to high-quality care for all Ontarians,” said Smitherman. “Their outstanding creativity will have a lasting impact on our healthcare system.”

The Celebrating Innovations in Healthcare Expo 2007 Minister’s Innovations Awards honour six category winners:

•Innovations in Health Human Resources
Huron Family Health Team – South West Local Health Integration Network (LHIN). HealthKick Huron educates youth about career opportunities in healthcare.

• Innovations in Health Information Management
Department of Family Medicine, McMaster University and Fig P. Software Incorporated – Hamilton Niagara Haldimand Brant Local Health Integration Network (LHIN). Provider-Patient Reminders in Ontario Multi-strategy Prevention Tools (P-PROMPT) boosts screening rates in Ontario for mammograms, pap testing, influenza vaccination and childhood primary vaccinations.

• Improving Efficiency Through Process Redesign
Holland Orthopaedic and Arthritic Centre, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre – Toronto Central Local Health Integration Network (LHIN). New Assessment Model for Hip and Knee Replacement reduces wait times and improves care for people undergoing hip and knee replacement surgery by creating a centralized assessment centre.

• Improving Quality and Patient Safety
Group Health Centre, Sault Ste. Marie – North East Local Health Integration Network (LHIN). Health Promotion Initiatives (HPI) improve the quality of healthcare and helped sustain a 43 percent reduction in hospital readmissions.

• Innovations in Health Promotion
Whitby Mental Health Centre – Central East Local Health Integration Network (LHIN). Stomp out Stigma program encourages teenagers to create anti-stigma mental health issue teams within their own schools.

• Meeting Community Needs Through Integrated Healthcare
Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre – North West Local Health Integration Network (LHIN). Multi Site Cardiac Rehabilitation Program helps provide better care and rehabilitation for people who have cardiac illness.

The winners were selected by an independent panel of health experts. Their programs met the following criteria:

• Innovative for the entire healthcare sector;
• Easily replicated across the healthcare system;
• Made smart, efficient use of resources;
• Integrated team-work across the healthcare system;
• Dealt with important priorities and challenges in the healthcare system.

“We congratulate the six winners, and all those who made a submission, for their hard work to make healthcare better for all Ontarians,” said Hugh MacLeod, Assistant Deputy Minister, Health System Accountability and Performance Division, Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care.

Healthcare Expo 2007 showcased innovative solutions and projects supporting the healthcare system in Ontario. More than 200 exhibitors and 14 high-level workshops promoted important healthcare issues such as: health promotion, improving patient quality and safety and innovations in health human resources.