CFHI and TVN announce ACE for older Canadians

Samir SinhaOTTAWA – The Canadian Foundation for Healthcare Improvement (CFHI), in partnership with Technology Evaluation in the Elderly Network (TVN), has announced a new initiative to improve healthcare for older Canadians. The Acute Care for Elders (ACE) collaborative will support healthcare delivery organizations as they adapt and implement elder-friendly models of care and practices that are improving patient care and generating impressive savings at Mount Sinai Hospital in Toronto.

The CFHI-TVN partnership is providing up to 15 improvement teams across Canada with funding of up to $40,000 each, coaching, educational materials and other tools as part of a 12-month quality improvement effort to adapt Mount Sinai’s successful ACE strategy to local care settings.

Mount Sinai is recognized as a leader in elder care in Canada, having garnered two Accreditation Canada Leading Practice awards. ACE represents seamless care delivery spanning the emergency department, inpatient, outpatient and community care. Teams of specialist physicians, advanced practice nurses, social workers, therapists, pharmacists, dieticians and volunteers work together to provide better, more coordinated care for patients.

“Mount Sinai Hospital’s leadership in recognizing that a rapidly aging population requires a modern and elder-friendly approach to care is what brought me back to Canada,” said Samir K. Sinha (pictured), MD, director of geriatrics, Mount Sinai Hospital, and Provincial Lead for Ontario’s Seniors Strategy. “The opportunity to partner now with CFHI will not only help thousands more older Canadians, but may also help to ensure the overall sustainability of our healthcare system.”

Maureen O’Neil, CFHI president, said: “With an aging population, better meeting of the health needs of older adults is a priority. That’s why CFHI is spreading innovative solutions like ACE that provide higher quality care for patients, and better value for healthcare dollars.”

The ACE components include:

• Tools to help emergency department staff identify high-risk older seniors
• Deployment of nurses and volunteers who have dedicated training in addressing the needs of older, frail seniors
• Unique protocols for common issues like pain management, falls and pressure ulcers
• Staff education to reduce the use of urinary catheters
• Hospital wards adapted to maximize coordination of patient assessment and discharge planning so patient mobility is maximized and their disorientation minimized
• Patient discharge aids and home visits to help patients with medications, and to encourage successful transition from hospital to their preferred place of residence.

Canadian hospitals traditionally have not been designed to meet the needs of an aging population. Canadians 65 and older are 16% of the population, yet represent 58% of all hospital stays and 42% of acute care hospitalizations. 25% of Canadians over 65 years and 50% of seniors over 85 years are considered medically frail, which means more than one million Canadians today are frail, with their numbers rising to over two million within 20 years.

For its part, Mount Sinai has generated solid results for medical inpatients over the age of 65, including:

• 28% drop in total lengths of stay
• 14% fewer readmissions within 30 days
• 74% less use of urinary catheters
• 93% decline in pressure ulcer occurrence
• 11% fewer patients remaining in institutional care, returning instead to their preferred residential setting
• Mount Sinai reports net cost savings in acute care of nearly $6.7 million in 2014.

“TVN recognizes the importance of making sure elderly Canadians receive the right treatment in the right setting at the right time,” said John Muscedere, MD, Scientific Director and Chief Executive Officer, TVN. “TVN is proud to support the ACE collaborative and similar programs that improve the quality of care for older Canadians, show compassion for their caregivers and yield strong economic impact for institutions and Canadian healthcare.”

About the Partners
The Canadian Foundation for Healthcare Improvement (CFHI) identifies proven innovations and accelerates their spread across Canada, improving patient care, the health of Canadians and value for money. These innovations could save provincial-territorial healthcare budgets over $1 billion per year. CFHI is a not-for-profit organization funded through an agreement with the Government of Canada. Visit for more information.

About Technology Evaluation in the Elderly Network (TVN)
Technology Evaluation in the Elderly Network is Canada’s network for frail elderly and late-life care solutions. We support original research, and train the next generation of healthcare professionals and scientists to improve outcomes for elderly Canadians across all settings of care. Recognizing they may be nearing the end of life, TVN is dedicated to improving advance care planning and end-of-life care. Visit for more information.

About Mount Sinai Hospital
Mount Sinai Hospital, part of Sinai Health System, is as an internationally recognized 442-bed acute care academic health sciences centre affiliated with the University of Toronto. Clinical strengths include women’s and infants’ health, chronic disease management, specialized cancer care, emergency medicine, and geriatrics. Mount Sinai has been designated with Exemplary Status from Accreditation Canada and every aspect of patient care is anchored in a rigorous quality plan and monitoring of safety and quality goals. Mount Sinai was recently named the first hospital in Canada to receive Magnet(r) status for nursing excellence and patient care. The Hospital is considered to be a top employer in Canada, receiving multiple awards for its employment and culture centred programs.

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