Improving access to safe, quality health careThe creation of Health PEI in July 2010 was a major step toward realizing a One Island Health System that can provide Islanders the right care, by the right provider, in the right place. Since then Health PEI has worked to improve access to safe, quality care for all Islanders.
Primary health care is becoming more available
Primary care is the first point of contact between Islanders and their health system. Use of primary care services helps people develop and maintain good health habits and manage chronic illness, ultimately reducing emergency department visits and hospitalizations.
Five Primary Health Care Networks are being developed across the province that use teams of professionals, including physicians and nurse practitioners, to work toward a goal of ensuring all Islanders are within 30 km of a primary health care site.
Wait times for MRI and CT Scans have decreased
Prince Edward Island has shown a downward trend in wait times for MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) and CT (Computed Tomography) scans. Radiation therapy wait times continue to be among the best in the country.
Home care services have been improved
Licensed Practical Nurses have been introduced, staff positions have been added and evening and weekend services expanded to better allow Islanders to receive health care in the comfort of their own homes when safe and appropriate.
Patient discharge preparation has been enhanced
Standard tools to support hospital discharge planning, such as unit and bedside whiteboards, are being erected in hospitals to enhance patient-centered care. The whiteboards can make multi-disciplinary communication more efficient and effective, reduce post-discharge problems, and better involve patients and their family members in their care.
Electronic health records improve patient care, safety
Health PEI is recognized as a national leader in implementing electronic health records, which integrate patients’ information into an electronic “chart” that follows them to any health care provider they choose. Making this information more available to providers streamlines their work flow and increases the safety of every Islander who accesses their health system.
More and better long-term care services have been added
The new Colville (Souris) and Maplewood (Alberton) long-term care facilities opened in fall 2011, and the new Summerset Manor (Summerside) and Prince Edward Home (Charlottetown) will be ready for occupancy by Spring 2013. An additional 15 beds are being added to a wing of the Margaret Stewart Ellis Home (O'Leary), bringing the number of beds to 40.
Cancer care has improved significantly
The Provincial Cancer Treatment Center includes a new linear accelerator and an increase in specialized staff including medical physicists and radiation therapists, wait times for breast cancer screening and radiation therapy are among the nation’s lowest, and more than a dozen cancer drugs have been added to the drug formulary since 2007.
Stroke care is more coordinated and focused
The provincial Organized Stroke Care model has improved stroke services by providing a coordinated approach that includes early assessment, mobilization and rehabilitation, and has enhanced hospital inpatient and ambulatory services to improve the outcomes for patients.
Mental health services better meeting Islanders’ needs
Work is underway to develop enhanced primary mental health care through collaborative practices with primary care providers throughout the Island. Improvements in mental health and addictions services, focused on better coordination of care and integration of services, mean Islanders can expect better transitions to the specialized mental health care they need.
Dialysis treatment is expanding
A new dialysis treatment unit at PCH opened in April 2012, and a Provincial Renal Clinic and a new hemodialysis site will be part of the new Ambulatory Care Center at the QEH. This will provide life-saving treatments to patients with kidney failure.