MEDEC, CAET, CAWC and OntWIG Announce Alliance

Collaboration Aimed at Pursuing a Wound Management Innovation Agenda

TORONTO, Nov. 16, 2011 /CNW/ - MEDEC announced that it has teamed up with the Canadian Association for Enterostomal Therapy (CAET); the Canadian Association for Wound Care (CAWC) and the Ontario Woundcare Interest Group (OntWIG) to pursue the development of a national evidence-based wound management innovation strategy. As a first step, the alliance is poised to host a Wound Innovation Summit in 2012 with broad stakeholder engagement from the academic, government, provider, clinical and commercial sectors.

In Canada, hundreds of thousands of patients experience the debilitating effects of acute and chronic wounds every day. Despite costing the health system hundreds of millions of dollars annually, wound prevention and care is not recognized as a major national health priority.

MEDEC's Wound Care Committee formed a Task Force in 2010 that recommended advocating for a national wound care innovation agenda. The objectives of the plan included promoting evidence-based quality patient care; improving timely access to innovative and cost-effective wound management products and services; accelerating the development of a made-in-Canada strategy for the discovery, development and delivery of wound technology, expertise and knowledge for both Canadian and global markets; and advocating for public and private sector investment to allow wound care companies to thrive in Canada. The Task Force identified a natural alignment between government's keen interest in innovation as an economic driver of jobs and investment and the wound care industry's strength in bringing innovative products and services to market. "To be able to join forces with CAET, CAWC and OntWIG is a significant accomplishment. Together we can advance access to quality wound prevention and care for the benefit of patients regardless of where they live", said John Gregory, Chair of the MEDEC Wound Care Committee.

"The alliance represents an important step forward in furthering CAET's mission of representing specialized nursing care for patients with wound challenges," said Karen Bruton, President Canadian Association for Enterostomal Therapy. "The Summit planned for later next year is an ideal platform for us to raise awareness of the role of the enterostomal therapist in delivering high quality wound care."

"The strength of the relationship between CAWC and our alliance partners is in the resources, technologies and experience that each organization brings to the table" said Pat Coutts, President Canadian Association of Wound Care. "By working together, we can maximize our effectiveness in raising the profile of wound care within the healthcare system."

"OntWIG and the alliance share a commitment to advancing evidence-based wound care policy" said Laura Teague, OntWIG President. "We are confident that our joint efforts will dramatically improve patients' lives in the years ahead."

About MEDEC
MEDEC (www.medec.org) is the national association representing the medical technology industry in Canada. Our members are committed to providing safe and innovative medical technologies that enhance patient care and advance patient outcomes. The medical technology industry in Canada employs over 35,000 Canadians in close to 1,500 corporate facilities, and has sales of nearly $7 billion per annum. MEDEC's Wound Care Committee represents 3M Canada Company; Coloplast Canada; ConvaTec Canada Ltd.; COVIDIEN; Healthpoint; Hill-Rom; Hollister Limited (Canada); KCI Medical Canada Inc.; Molnlycke Health Care; Smith & Nephew Inc.; Stryker Canada LP; Systagenix Wound Management; and TSS - Therapeutic Surface Solutions.

About CAET
CAET (www.caet.ca) The Canadian Association for Enterostomal Therapy represents Canada's enterostomal therapy nurses, promotes high standards for ET nursing practice, education, research and administration for this group of specialized nurses who provide specialized wound, ostomy and continence nursing services.

About CAWC
CAWC (www.cawc.net) The Canadian Association of Wound Care (CAWC) is a non-profit organization of healthcare professionals, researchers, corporate supporters, patients and caregivers dedicated to the advancement of wound care in Canada.

About OntWIG
OntWIG (http://ontwig.rnao.ca/) OntWIG is an affiliated interest group of the Registered Nurses Association of Ontario (RNAO). Membership is comprised of interdisciplinary health care professionals from all health care sectors with a mandate to influence wound prevention and treatment policy in Ontario.

For further information:

communications@medec.org