New program aims to help clinics, specialists improve access to services

    International expert to serve as adviser to Health Quality Council

    SASKATOON, March 6 /CNW/ - Lengthy waiting lists, patient no-shows, and
frantic workdays could become a thing of the past for health care providers in
Saskatchewan, thanks to a new program being offered by the Health Quality
Council, in conjunction with an international expert in improving access.
    Clinical Practice Redesign (CPR) is a method proven to decrease wait
times and missed appointments as well as improve patient/provider satisfaction
and efficiency. The approach has been used successfully by some providers in
Saskatchewan and other provinces, as well as in the United States. The Health
Quality Council is offering CPR School, a hands-on training program for anyone
interested in learning the method - clinicians, office managers, and medical
    Catherine Tantau, an internationally recognized authority on access,
efficiency, and patient flow through health care systems, is the expert
adviser to the program. Ms. Tantau led the creation and implementation of the
Clinical Practice Redesign model. She has worked with hundreds of health care
organizations in the U.S. and Europe on improving access and efficiency,
including the National Health Service of Great Britain and Kaiser Permanente
in California.
    The Clinical Practice Redesign method applies to any appointment or
referral based system. The tools and techniques help practices understand
their supply (available appointments) and demand (requests for appointments)
and find ways of better matching supply and demand.
    "When you have a waiting list that's two or three months long, it might
seem like you don't have enough people or appointment slots to meet the
demand," says Bonnie Brossart, CEO of Health Quality Council. "Practices are
often surprised to discover that they have enough capacity; clinical practice
redesign is about helping providers and office staff understand their system
and use their capacity more effectively. It takes some work, but the end
result is a more efficient office that allows patients to be seen in a timely
manner and providers to spend more time with their patients."
    The Saskatchewan Medical Association (SMA) and the Ministry of Health are
supporting this initiative by sponsoring spots in the program for ten
physician practices.
    "Saskatchewan physicians are excited to be supporting this initiative by
partnering with the Ministry of Health to jointly sponsor ten of our
colleagues to participate," adds SMA President Dr. Joe Pfeifer. "The SMA has
made the development of physician leadership skills a priority and we believe
the knowledge and skills gained through this program will be of significant
benefit to physicians and patients alike."
    CPR School will begin its first training sessions in April 2008. There
are a limited number of spots available to interested participants. More
information is available on the Health Quality Council web site: or by calling (306)668-8810, ext. 104.

    HQC is an independent agency with a mandate to measure and report on
health system performance and work with providers and managers to improve
quality of care.

For further information:

For further information: about Clinical Practice Redesign School, or to
arrange an interview with Bonnie Brossart (CEO, Health Quality Council) please
contact: Sheila Ragush, Communications Consultant, Phone: (306) 220-5075
(mobile) or (306) 668-8810 ext 113 (land)

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Health Quality Council

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