Dr. Christine Soong, Medical Director of Quality and Safety at Sinai Health and Agnes Tong, Senior Manager of Quality and Patient Safety at Sinai Health

Last October, we held Sinai Health’s inaugural Quality and Safety Symposium to celebrate outstanding achievements in quality and safety.

We asked the two co-leads of the event, Dr. Christine Soong, Medical Director of Quality and Safety at Sinai Health and Agnes Tong, Senior Manager of Quality and Patient Safety, to share some reflections and highlights of the event:

Quality improvement and opportunities for equitable care

We kicked off the symposium with keynote speaker Dr. Andrew Pinto, Clinician-Scientist at St. Michael’s Hospital and Director, Upstream Lab, MAP Centre for Urban Health Solutions at the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute. He shared how quality improvement intersects with equity goals and that understanding social determinants can help create solutions to tackle differences in care outcomes.

Social determinants of health are shaped by money, power and resources. Dr. Pinto shared it’s worth considering how we, in our clinical work, are influencing the distribution of these determinants with a specific focus on how and with whom can this power be shared.

“Health care organizations can play an elevated role in shifting the discourse around health from downstream to upstream by disseminating information and building synergies with “unusual suspects” in other sectors such as education, employment and housing,” noted Dr. Soong

Patient experience – Safety conversations

 Angella Beckford, Patient Advisor at Hennick Bridgepoint Hospital discussed ways to improve care and safety conversations as well as partnerships with patients and caregivers.

Angella was diagnosed with deep vein thrombosis in her legs that ultimately traveled to her lungs, following a misdiagnosis earlier. After this near fatal incident, she required rehab and was admitted to Hennick Bridgepoint Hospital. Through her personal story, she emphasized how crucial it is for health-care providers to be empathetic and spend more time listening to patients.

“The work that Angella does for patient advocacy inspires health care teams to make safety conversations with patients and caregivers an integral part of the patient experience and how we deliver care,” said Agnes.

Science of Care – collectively creating pathways for new discoveries and innovations in care

Dr. Lianne Jeffs, Scientific Director, Institute for the Science of Care and Innovation at Sinai Health, reflected on the Science of Care projects that are optimizing care outcomes and experiences to achieve clinical excellence through a fundamental care lens.

Supporting Angella’s stance on patient experience, the Science of Care focuses on empathetic and compassionate human to human connections across the continuum of care.

The interprofessional teams showcased how they have been engaged in improving care through innovations that enhance rehab services, improve breathing in neonates, identify cognitive and communication impairments of patients with COVID-19, and more.

 Way forward

We closed the symposium with the awards segment, in which we shared and celebrated outstanding achievements in quality and safety at Sinai Health. These include awards for top abstracts, individual, team and patient and family quality awards, as well as “Good Catch” awards in honour of Canadian Patient Safety Week.

The level of collaboration and commitment to quality and innovation is inspiring. “As custodians of care, we share responsibility not only in discovering and delivering life-changing care, but also in encouraging each other to be curious, creative, compassionate, and connected,” said Dr. Soong. “I always ask myself: What might be? What should be? And how might we?”

Award Winners

Top abstract presentations:

Equity track: Restoring Connection: Intentionally Connecting With Caregivers During No Visitor Policy

Jennifer Ridgway, Akiko Okamoto, Nicole Allard, Leonardo Alfaro, Melissa Byers, Brittany Pepper

Innovation track: Achieving Wound Closure Using Ammonitic and Chorionic Allografts at Sinai Health

Laura Teague, Balram Sukhu, Maria Becerra, Eliana Sutton, Paula Shing, Nely Amaral

Quality track: Reducing the Rate of Postoperative Urinary Retention After Total Knee Arthroplasty

Josh Gleicher; Naveed Siddiqui, Muhammad Khan; Andrew Wyllie, Jesse Wolfstadt

Sinai Health Awards of Excellence in Quality and Safety presented to:

PACE IBD Telemedicine Program (Team Award)

Dr. Tara Burra (Individual Champion Award)

Dr. Ashraf Kharrat Individual Champion Award)

Sinai Health Patient and Family Advisory Councils (Patient/Family/Caregiver Award)

Canadian Patient Safety Week – Good Catch Awards:

MSH Pharmacy team: Sonam Maknojia, Sumaya Farah, Tova Ross, Josephine Vu, Rachel Fu, Angelo Panganiban

MSH Fetal Medicine: Leslie Vermeersch

HBH 10N: Claudia Chang