Manitoulin Health Centre Notes

The monthly meeting for the Manitoulin Health Centre (MHC) Board of Directors was held March 24 at the Mindemoya site along with a teleconference for those members who could not attend due to inclement weather.

A presentation was made to the board by Lynn Foster, vice president and chief financial officer of the Northwest Supply Chain (NSC), regarding an overview and the current state of NSC. As she outlined, the NSC mission statement is to support members’ supply chain management through a consolidated strategic sourcing model that drives cost efficiencies. NSC was established in 2011 and is currently comprised of 13 hospitals within the Local Health Integration Network (LHIN) 14.

Started by Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre and St. Joseph’s Care Group, each hospital is represented on a steering committee and has an equal vote and participation achieves systemic efficiencies and improved patient outcomes. Services offered include strategic sourcing, contract and data management, materials distribution and logistic services. NSC metrics show a total annualized savings of $6.9 million, an average return on investment of 17.4, steering committee approval rating of 93.3 percent and member satisfaction of 94.3 percent.  A consultant study had led to a projected purchase price improvement savings of $16.82M over a 10-year period, but in fact, led to revised project savings over the same time of $30.61 million.

Ms. Foster also outlined the benefits of the Northern Ontario Supply Chain Collaboration (NOSCC) including proven value and clinical results, Northern Ontario representation at provincial meetings, the maintenance and growth of jobs in the North, data management expertise and new tools and alignment with the government directive for greater collaboration. As well, NOSCC will elevate provincial advocacy to achieve solutions that meet the unique needs of Northern Ontario hospitals.

Derek Graham, CEO of the two Island hospital sites, presented his summary report to the board with an emphasis on three strategic directions for the organization. These include the enhancement of the experiences of patients, the need for leaders to live their roles and the fostering of staff knowledge and engagement.

Mr. Graham reported that a presentation was held and a $14,000 gift received from the Royal Canadian Legion, Ontario Command Branches and the Ladies Auxiliaries Foundation. As well, a gift was received from the Manitoulin OPP and friends as a result of a fundraising curling event. Another factor which will enhance patients experience is the development of a local longer term methadone program stabilization delivery plan.

Other items in the CEO report include the submission of a response to the Minister’s restructuring paper dubbed Patients First. The consultation period for this report has passed and legislation is being drafted. It is expected that this will dissolve the 14 Community Care Access Centres (CCAC) in Ontario.

Also of note was the reporting that issues around assisted deaths are complex and have resulted in a variety of positions being taken by organizations. “There is not a formal local mechanism in place,” Mr. Graham explained, although he noted that a Supreme Court ruling means that Canadians do have the right to ask for assisted death in certain circumstances. He emphasized that immediate action must take place with meetings with the Ethics Committee and legal representatives to ensure that due diligence is done. “We will bring that information to the board and determine what the MHC decision will be,” Mr. Graham said. “Our goal is first understanding the issues.”

As well, reports from the vice president (VP) clinical services and VP support services were received by the board. Of note was the fact that compliments and or concerns boxes have been posted at each hospital site, all the new beds purchased from the Sweet Slumbers campaign have arrived and are in use, the North East Joint Assessment Program (NEJAC) has received funding to enable patients to have assessments done here on the Island which will save patients three trips and considerable wait time and work is being done to assess the needs and resources of palliative patients on the Island.

MHC Chief of Staff Stephen Cooper also reported at the meeting, beginning with a follow up to the last report and stated that the Northeast LHIN physician leadership meeting will be on April 22. He also explained that ensuring that the region is capable of managing surges in health care needs remains a priority.

Hospital auxiliary reports saw the success of a casserole dinner held in Little Current with $1,000 raised, plans to sell Vesey bulbs as a fundraiser and the fact that eight people will be going to a conference in Sault Ste Marie. The auxiliary also sees merit in transitioning from the present special committee of the board to becoming a permanent committee.

Mindemoya hospital auxiliary will also be sending members to the conference in the Soo with five people going. As well, the organization has prepared 200 hygiene bags for hospital patients and announced that the annual spring tea will be held on May 14. A commitment has also been passed to focus fundraising on the replacement of telemetry equipment which is used to measure a patient’s vital signs related to coronary disease.