As part of this year’s Digital Health Week, we’re excited to announce the teams participating in the Virtual Care Together design collaborative. The collaborative, a partnership between Healthcare Excellence Canada (HEC) and Canada Health Infoway (Infoway), is part of the Clinician Change Management project which will provide a set of materials and tools to support care teams, including patients and essential care partners, in delivering equitable, safe and high-quality virtual care.
Through the collaborative, 24 participating teams across the country, including community-based primary care clinics, will test and refine supports needed to implement safe virtual care. Teams will have access to tools and learning supports to identify opportunities for appropriate use of virtual care as well as improve the safety – including cultural safety – and quality of virtual care interactions.
The pandemic has proven the value of virtual care as a complement to in-person care, but challenges remain. With the right tools and training to optimize the use of virtual care, healthcare providers can meet the needs of the patients and communities they serve and ultimately improve experiences and outcomes.
“The use of virtual care grew rapidly during the pandemic, allowing people to access care closer to home,” said Jennifer Zelmer, President and CEO of Healthcare Excellence Canada. “Through the collaborative, teams are exploring what worked well and refining tools and practices to help more people benefit from safe virtual care.”
The collaborative was launched in October 2021 and will run to the end of March 2022. After the design collaborative has completed its work, HEC and Infoway will determine the appropriate strategy to scale the use of the Clinician Change toolkit which will include recommended resources to help optimize the virtual care experience for both care providers and patients.
“Canadians appreciate the option of virtual care as they integrate digital health solutions into their everyday lives,” said Michael Green, President and CEO, Infoway. “This project will equip health care providers with the right tools to provide high-quality care and enhance the virtual care experience for themselves and their patients.”
The Virtual Care Together design collaborative is part of Infoway’s initiatives to develop and expand virtual care solutions across Canada and HEC’s efforts to shift care closer to home with safe transitions.