Ontario Hospital Association Welcomes Auditor General's 2007 Annual Report

    TORONTO, Dec. 11 /CNW/ - Today, Ontario's Auditor General released his
2007 Annual Report, a chapter of which examined the management and use of
surgical facilities by Ontario's hospitals. The report noted that hospitals
and the government have partnered to develop Ontario's Wait Times Strategy -
an initiative that is reducing the length of time patients wait for priority
procedures - while also noting that more work needs to be done to further
improve access to care.
    "Ontario's hospitals welcome the Auditor General's recommendations, and
plan to review each one of them very carefully," said Hilary Short, President
and CEO of the Ontario Hospital Association (OHA).
    To date, the OHA and Ontario's hospitals have worked with their partners
to improve wait times management and infection control processes by:

    -   Implementing recommendations from the Surgical Process Analysis and
        Improvement Expert Panel and General Surgery Expert Panel
    -   Working with Peri-operative Improvement Expert Coaching Teams
    -   Supporting the Wait Time Information System and the Surgical
        Efficiency Targets Program
    -   Hosting educational sessions, including a videoconference in November
        2007 on the Provincial Infectious Diseases Advisory Committee's
        (PIDAC) Best Practices for Cleaning, Disinfection and Sterilization
        in All Health Care Settings manual

    Ontario's hospitals are leaders in adopting evidence-based leading
practices wherever possible in order to promote the safety of patients and
staff. In response to recommendations made by the Auditor General in his 2006
Annual Report, the OHA worked with the Ministry of Health and Long Term Care
to ensure that leading practices related to the procurement and use of CT/MRI
scanners were shared across the hospital sector. Similar, comprehensive
activities are being planned by the OHA to respond to this year's report.
    "Our hospitals are among the most efficient in the country, but we are
always looking for new ways to enhance our services," said Short. "In the time
ahead, the OHA plans to offer useful education related to wait times
management and infection control practices to ensure that patient care in
Ontario is the best that it can be."

For further information:

For further information: Amy Ouellette, OHA Public Affairs, (416)
205-1433, aouellette@oha.com

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