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Government & policy

Infoway launches new, million-dollar health IT contest

TORONTO – Canada Health Infoway has launched its ImagineNation Outcomes Challenge, which will accelerate the use of innovative IT solutions with the potential to improve healthcare quality and the patient experience.

“The ImagineNation Outcomes Challenge taps into the desire of Canadians and their clinicians to develop and spread innovations that improve healthcare,” said Richard Alvarez (pictured), President and CEO of the organization. “Infoway is proud to offer more than $1 million in awards to help teams across the country accelerate the use of e-solutions with the potential to improve healthcare quality and the patient experience.”

The Outcomes Challenge offers more than $1 million in awards to teams whose solutions are used most and those with the strongest growth of users in any of the four Challenge categories:

Enables patients to book appointments online or by mobile device, which can save both patients and clinicians time.

Patient Access to Health Information
Empowers patients to view their own health information, such as lab results or immunization history.

Medication Reconciliation
Improves medication safety by making it easier to take a complete medication history and ensure new prescriptions or changes in medications are reconciled with this list.

Clinical Synoptic Reporting
Improves clinical communication by having evidence-embedded tools available at the point-of-care, making it easier to create structured summaries of the patient’s current care that can be used by the healthcare team.

“We congratulate Infoway for their leadership on this innovative knowledge transfer initiative,” said Hugh MacLeod, CEO, Canadian Patient Safety Institute (CPSI). “Medication safety is a high priority for CPSI and we look forward to putting a spotlight on the successes happening across the county to improve care.”

“We are proud to be one of the national associations supporting the Challenge,” said Wendy Nicklin, President and CEO, Accreditation Canada, “It’s a creative way to showcase quality and innovation and improve care in a way that aligns with key components of the Qmentum accreditation program.”

Supporting Organizations
The following leading Canadian health care organizations are working with Infoway to help shape the Challenge by providing expert advice, encouraging participation and promoting the Challenge and its results:

• Accreditation Canada
• Association of Canadian Academic Healthcare Organizations (ACAHO)
• Canadian Home Care Association
• Canadian Partnership Against Cancer (CPAC)
• Canadian Patient Safety Institute (CPSI)
• Health Action Lobby (HEAL)
• Institute for Safe Medication Practices (ISMP Canada)
• Patients’ Association of Canada
• Patients for Patient Safety Canada
• Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada

Why a Challenge? Why now?

Challenges are a good way of eliciting and spreading innovation. In a fall 2010 Ipsos survey, gathering information about Canadians’ priorities for consumer health solutions, 85 percent of respondents agreed that running challenges like this one was a good way to get and test new ideas about how to provide health information products and services.

Infoway has committed to engage in open challenges to encourage broader innovation in a cost-effective and timely way, while fostering a community of innovators across the country. The ImagineNation Outcomes and ImagineNation Ideas Challenges are part of Infoway’s ongoing innovation program.

About Canada Health Infoway
Canada Health Infoway is an independent, not-for-profit organization funded by the federal government. Infoway jointly invests with every province and territory to accelerate the development and adoption of information and communications technology projects in Canada. Fully respecting patient confidentiality, these secure systems will provide clinicians and patients with the information they need to better support safe care decisions and manage their own health. Accessing this vital information quickly will help foster a more modern and sustainable health care system for all Canadians.

Posted September 22, 2011