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Highlighting Quality Improvement in Toronto

By IHI Open School | Wednesday, June 13, 2012

It was a long, but satisfying day.


From the early-morning set up to the take down in the evening, the 2nd annual Quality Improvement & Patient Safety (QuIPS) Conference, presented by the Institute for Healthcare Improvement’s University of Toronto Chapter, provided ample opportunity to discover the breadth of health care system innovations occurring in Toronto and beyond.


Held May 5 at the University of Toronto, the conference drew about 140 delegates from across universities in the greater Toronto area. Presentations from professionals and students alike highlighted the many initiatives being undertaken to improve health care delivery throughout Ontario, from developments in e-Health, to mobile phone applications for children with diabetes, to improvements in hand washing compliance.


Most gratifying, however, was seeing the projects done by the many students present, displayed for the whole conference to see. I was incredibly proud that the work my team had done was one of these projects. Over the better part of the last academic year, five students from various health care-related backgrounds, including myself, have been engaged in a quality improvement project at one of the major hospitals in downtown Toronto. We had the chance to work on a program to improve physician adherence to well-established guidelines on the prevention of serious blood clot formation in the legs of non-mobile patients. We had an opportunity to see how frequently physicians were considering this risk, and to initiate interventions in one department aimed at improving the rates of risk assessment. While results are still preliminary, it does appear as though there was an improvement after these interventions.


After months of dedication demonstrated by my teammates and our in-hospital support, it was very rewarding to not only have our poster be viewed by so many influential individuals. (Having our efforts recognized by being voted 2nd in the conference poster competition was simply icing on the cake.) It was a fitting culmination to over half a year of hard work overcoming challenges to make improvements to the health care system in our community.


The QuIPS conference was an excellent venue to share our story and learn from others, and I can express nothing but appreciation for being given the chance to do so.



- Craig Olmstead, Medical Student, University of Toronto


Originally posted on June 13, 2012

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