RVH focuses on innovation, learning and research
May 5, 2021
BARRIE, Ont. – The Royal Victoria Regional Health Centre (RVH) has announced a refreshed “My Care Strategic Plan”, which president and chief executive officer Janice Skot (pictured) says is guided by a commitment to safety and quality. The strategy also highlights innovation, learning and research. Together, these elements are intended to elevate RVH to the next level of excellence, says Skot, adding that she likes to think of a strategic plan as a blueprint for the future.
“It’s meant to be an organizational roadmap and everyone can find their place and role. I always talk about us being in one boat, rowing in the same direction at the same speed and then the sky’s the limit as to what we can get done,” she said.
The reason management opted to refresh the health centre’s existing strategic plan, rather than create an entirely new one, is that the fundamentals of the plan, approved in 2013, still hold true today. The most important part of the plan are the values (Work Together, Respect All, Think Big, Own it and Care).
“Those five values are our cornerstone,” said Skot. “There’d be no reason for those to be discarded. They’re really quite current.”
More than 5,000 people have been involved in the plan since its initial development in 2013. The recent refresh has seen 600 members of RVH participate in surveys, feedback that has helped shape the overall goals of the plan itself. “This refresh plan has 15 overriding goals (that) are mission critical for our organization,” said Skot, noting the overarching strategy is around the focus on MyCare. “We really put emphasis on the best patient experience possible. As well, we’ve focused on making sure the patient receives timely care in the most appropriate setting.”
One of the roads to clinical excellence, said Skot, consists of partnerships with other health agencies. “If we’ve learned anything in the pandemic, it’s that nothing happens without partnership,” said Skot. “As the population ages, more chronic disease will be present and we know a lot of those can be prevented or delayed, which has a lot to do with building healthy communities.”
The strategy on driving clinical excellence is always about quality and safety, and one of the key elements is addressing overcrowding and population growth. “Barrie’s story has been RVH’s story. We started as a four-bed cottage hospital in the 1800s and we keep building and expanding because that’s exactly what the population does,” Skot said. “We have a very ambitious plan, we call it our MP2 plan, but it’s a North Campus redevelopment that doubles the size of the building as well as a South Campus, that will fit where the population is growing.”
“We are interested in developing PET/CT scanning facilities at RVH. We know our Wellington Street dialysis centre is older and needs to be redeveloped soon. We have some spaces that we were allowed to build when the government approved the project in 2012 … where we want to create a medical step-down unit … that would be a really important transition of care for us.”
There is also a focus on optimizing technology. RVH and three other partner hospitals are developing an electronic health record that will take them closer to being paperless than where they are today.
“That’s an opportunity to optimize technology, mostly to make it safe, but as we recruit more and more young healthcare professionals, their expectations are that technology is at their fingertips.”
None of this can happen, however, without valuing people.
“We’re really working on making sure all voices are heard. We have developed a diversity and inclusion counsel and want people to feel safe, valued and belong. We want to be not only recruiting but retaining the best people who really live our values,” she said. “RVH is a values-driven organization. We expect people to want to live those values and to want to work where others live those values as well.”
A final component of the strategy is to accelerate teaching and research.
“We’ve done a fantastic job in developing our research potential. We have leaders in research, (but) we know many who come to work for us would like to have an academic opportunity within a community regional hospital like RVH,” Skot said. “We know it promotes innovation, enhances patient care and helps to retain and attract exceptional people.”