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Mackenzie Health launches 34-bed Innovation Unit

Tiziana RiveraRICHMOND HILL, Ont. – Mackenzie Health has launched an Innovation Unit, a first-in-Canada project which features a unique integration of advanced technology that transforms the delivery of care. The Innovation Unit is a 34-bed medical unit within Mackenzie Richmond Hill Hospital that has been converted into a living and breathing laboratory for innovations to support evidence-based practice and further enhance patient experience.

“The Innovation Unit, a first step in Mackenzie Health’s Innovation Journey, is a streamlined approach to care designed to improve the patient safety and experience through the integration of advanced technologies,” said Tiziana Rivera (pictured), Chief Nursing Executive and Chief Practice Officer, Mackenzie Health.

“Ultimately, it enables nurses and other inter-professional team members to spend more time at the bedside, providing hands-on care,” she added. “Our technology partner has been instrumental in developing the Unit and we look forward to the review of our academic partners.”

The concept, design and implementation of the Innovation Unit have been developed by Mackenzie Health in collaboration with Hill-Rom Canada, a leading provider of medical technologies for the healthcare industry.

Mackenzie Health has also partnered with the International Centre for Health Innovation at the Ivey Business School to assess the impact of the integration of technology on quality, safety and patient care. Once the evaluation of the Innovation Unit has been completed, the findings will inform plans for the future expansion of this new and innovative approach to care across Mackenzie Richmond Hill Hospital, as well as the new Mackenzie Vaughan Hospital and beyond, at the health system level.

By implementing technologies that are designed and integrated to improve the patient experience and clinical outcomes, doctors and nurses are better able to perform their role and deliver safer, more efficient care to patients. The new technologies include:

• “Smart” beds that communicate safety alerts to staff to help prevent adverse events such as falls. Safety protocols can be setup for patients at risk to ensure that side rails, brakes and bed exit alarms are set up prior to the caregiver leaving the room. Other features include a built-in scale which allows for more accurate and timely weighing of patients.

• “Smart” stations, installed in every room, that provide patient information to caregivers where and when they need it. This technology allows caregivers to respond faster to patients’ needs, therefore improving patient outcomes and providing a better patient experience.

• “Smart” badges, which identify each staff member’s location on the unit, alerting them of any patient calls and enabling better communication. The system can record the response time and the amount of patient-care time provided.

• Hand hygiene support – a wireless system that proactively alerts staff of potential “missed” hand-hygiene opportunities and monitors hand hygiene events through proximity sensors.

“Mackenzie Health has embarked on an Innovation Journey where collaboration, partnerships and evidence-based practice set the stage to provide the best patient-centred care,” said Altaf Stationwala, President and CEO, Mackenzie Health. “At Mackenzie Health, we view innovation as a key factor for our organization going forward and strongly believe that pioneering projects such as the Innovation Unit will help us achieve our vision to create a world-class health experience for our community.”

Mackenzie Health is a dynamic regional healthcare provider which includes the existing Mackenzie Richmond Hill Hospital and the future Mackenzie Vaughan Hospital, as well as a comprehensive network of community-based services.

Construction on the new Mackenzie Vaughan Hospital is scheduled to begin in 2015. The Hospital will be completed and operational in 2019.

Nationally recognized for its commitment to safety and quality patient care, Mackenzie Health was also awarded Accreditation with Exemplary Standing, the highest rating a Canadian healthcare provider can receive.

With over 600,000 residents in Southwest York Region, Mackenzie Health is proud to serve one of the fastest growing and most diverse communities in Canada.

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