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March RHA Highlights

Highlights of the March meeting of the Sun Country Regional Health Authority

Members of the Sun Country Regional Health Authority (SCRHA) at their March meeting learned that 100 per cent of staff members in the Region’s facilities and home care program have received an initial education session about medication reconciliation for patients and residents. Additional education will be held in the coming months.

Sun Country Health Region (SCHR) is focussing on the documentation of all medications taken by patients and residents when they enter facilities or are transferred. The program is consistent with the Region’s goal to improve patient safety by preventing medication errors.

SCRHA also learned:

-         Two Registered Nurses and one out of scope staff were hired into difficult to fill positions from Feb 16-March 5. One Registered Nurse and one social worker resigned during that period.

-         Three physicians have arrived in Estevan since February.

-         Two medical students are confirmed to take their community experience part of their education in Weyburn during May and July.

-         Three medical students will participate in the internship with SCHR physicians this spring and summer.

-         About 50 facility and program managers participated in a strategic planning session to set priorities for the Region in the 2012-13 fiscal year.

-         The long term care addition to the Redvers Health Centre is 15 per cent complete. Steel structures have been constructed.

-         Construction of a new Radville Health Centre has experienced some delays but is moving along. It is about eight per cent complete.

-         About 30 per cent of the Region’s staff has completed the Lean training. This continues to be a priority for the Region.

-         Releasing Time to Care, a program to change the workplace to allow health care workers to focus on the patients/residents, has been expanded to all medical and surgical wards in the Region. Kipling Memorial Hospital is the latest facility to create a team.  

-         The Rural West Primary Health Care team received the provincial SHEA Award in March for excellence in health care. It is presented to those who go above and beyond the usual business of providing services to their patients/residents/clients.

-         SCHR continues to work with other Regions and the Ministry of Health to avoid running out of pain medications and avoid cancellation of surgeries.  Regions have been working together to keep an adequate supply of drugs in the system.

-         A kickoff was held in March to introduce a new digital technology for the diagnostic imaging departments in five facilities in the Region this year. Once the installation is complete, SCHR will send digital images electronically to a radiologist in Regina. The image can be read and returned the same day, speeding up diagnosis for patients by a considerable amount. The five facilities are located in Weyburn, Estevan, Oxbow, Redvers and Arcola.

-         Two SCHR employees are working with the Ministry of Health to develop a province-wide suicide protocol. Sara Irwin, Regional Manager of Mental Health and Rehabilitation Services and Marlene Salmers, Supervisor of Adult Mental Health Services, provided training this month to employees from other health regions on the protocol.

-         SCHR is holding discussions with the College of Medicine at the University of Saskatchewan about establishing a Family Medicine Resident Program in the Region. The plan is to have four seats by June 2013.

 Posted April 2.

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