North York General Hospital Wins Prestigious Health Care Quality Award

TORONTO, June 6, 2012 /CNW/ - North York General Hospital (NYGH) received a 3M Health Care Quality Team Award at the Canadian College of Health Leaders 2012 National Health Leadership Conference in Halifax yesterday afternoon.

The award was presented to NYGH for its successful eCare project that focused on deploying a computerized provider order entry (CPOE) system and medication barcode scanning. NYGH was the first hospital in Canada to implement barcode scanning that uniquely identifies each medication and each patient across all of its medical, surgical and critical care units. Barcode scanning has improved patient safety by alerting health care providers if they are about to make an error when administering a medication. Since the system was implemented, more than 2,300 potential medication administration errors were prevented through the use of barcode scanning.

NYGH's CPOE system was also the first in Canada to integrate the latest clinical evidence from medical literature into clinicians' workflow and is updated continually as new evidence is published in medical journals.

"The challenge of implementing change of such scope and scale was immense, but possible, thanks to great teamwork and a constant focus on quality and safety," said Dr. Tim Rutledge, president and CEO, North York General Hospital. "The success of eCare is a reflection of our people who made it happen."

eCare is a multi-year project that leaves behind manual systems vulnerable to errors and summarizes mountains of medical literature for health care providers, all to benefit patients. Phase two of the eCare project resulted in NYGH achieving a Stage 6 designation from HIMSS Analytics, the research arm of the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS). NYGH is the only community academic hospital in Canada to receive a Stage 6 designation. "We set out to develop a system designed by clinicians, for clinicians," said Dr. Jeremy Theal, gastroenterologist and director, Medical Informatics, North York General Hospital. "We knew that 37 per cent of adverse events in hospitals were highly preventable and that, in this age of advancing technology, we could not rely solely on human vigilance to prevent errors based on what evidence and best practices were telling us." Since the launch of eCare phase two, all physicians from medical, surgical, critical and paediatric care areas have adopted CPOE with 94 per cent of all orders entered directly by physicians. The remaining six per cent of orders comprises verbal, phone and medical directives entered by other clinicians.

About North York General Hospital

North York General Hospital, affiliated with the University of Toronto, is one of Canada's leading community academic hospitals. We offer our culturally diverse community a wide range of acute care, ambulatory and long-term care services across three sites.  The hospital embraces health by providing innovative and compassionate care for the whole family at every stage of life.

SOURCE North York General Hospital

For further information:

Elizabeth McCarthy, Senior Communications Specialist
P: 416-756-6725
E: elizabeth.mccarthy@nygh.on.ca

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