Infoway investment to increase access to telehealth in Nunavut



    Nunavut and Manitoba collaborate on $2 million project

    IQALUIT, Sept. 10 /CNW/ - With the goal of increasing access to quality
patient care, Minister of Health and Social Services Leona Aglukkaq and
Richard Alvarez, President and CEO, Canada Health Infoway (Infoway) today
announced a $2 million investment by Infoway to expand access to telehealth
for Nunavut residents.
    "Through the investment in this project, we are able to upgrade our
current Telehealth sites and add supplementary sites in the Chesterfield Inlet
Naja Isabelle Home and all our southern boarding homes," said Aglukkaq. "This
partnership directly assists Nunavut's Telehealth team. The idea is to
increase the capacity of our community facilitators, develop a
train-the-trainer program, and build a clinically based program for the
Kivalliq and Kitikmeot regions."
    A key component of the Nunavut Telehealth Network Expansion and Change
Management project is the collaboration with the MBTelehealth Network in
Manitoba. MBTelehealth will share processes and knowledge with Nunavut
Telehealth by providing training, peer support and increasing capacity to
deliver 256 consultations each month, which is an increase of five per cent.
As part of the project, a new telehealth site will be developed at the
boarding home in Winnipeg that hosts patients from Nunavut who seek medical
care not available locally. This will help connect Nunavut families separated
by long distances.
    "We look forward to building on our existing relationship with the
telehealth program in Nunavut and working together to develop sustainable
processes and tools to support increased use of telehealth in Nunavut," said
Liz Loewen, MBTelehealth Director.
    "Today's telehealth expansion is rooted in innovation and collaboration
between Nunavut and Manitoba. We're proud to invest $2 million in this
worthwhile project as part of federal government's investments in technologies
that are increasing access to quality patient care across Canada," said
Alvarez. "Like so many of Canada's 250 other electronic health record
projects, today's expansion will remove barriers to patient care, save costs,
and uncover vast health system efficiencies."
    The partnership between Manitoba and Nunavut will assist the Kivalliq and
Kitikmeot programs by focusing on the following areas:

    
    -   Increasing use of telehealth for consultations between providers and
        patients who live far away
    -   Improving discharge planning between southern facilities and Nunavut
        communities
    -   Increasing family connections for those in the boarding homes
    

    Nunavut has been providing Telehealth services across the territory for a
number of years. The Nunavut Telehealth Network Expansion and Change
Management Initiative project is 100 per cent funded by Infoway.

    About Canada Health Infoway

    Canada Health Infoway is an independent, not-for-profit organization
funded by the Federal government. Infoway jointly invests in projects with
every province and territory to accelerate the development and adoption of
electronic health record systems in Canada. Fully respecting patient
confidentiality, this network of systems will provide clinicians and patients
with a faster way to manage, access, share and safeguard patient health
information. Accessing this vital information quickly will foster a more
modern and sustainable health care system for all Canadians.





For further information:

For further information: Yasmina Pepa, A/Director of Communications,
Health and Social Services, Government of Nunavut, (867) 975-5714,
ypepa@gov.nu.ca; Dan Strasbourg, Director, Corporate Communications, Canada
Health Infoway, (416) 595-3424, dstrasbourg@infoway-inforoute.ca


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