CEO Weekly Updates - February 2018

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CEO Weekly Updates - February 2018


See inside for compilation of February's messages

Transition Update - February 21, 2018

As we work to transform health care into a system that truly gives Saskatchewan residents access to high quality, timely patient care regardless of where they live, it is critical to take time to stop and recognize the strengths we already have that we can build on.

Take the intergenerational learning model being used at the Montmartre Health Centre. It helps connect residents to elementary school kids and connect the facility to the community, helping to break the cycle of isolation that often afflicts those living in these types of facilities.

Another example comes from the Accountable Care Units serving patients in Regina and Saskatoon. These units are achieving timelier and more effective care for patients as a result of deploying a coordinated team-based care model. The Health Quality Council noted the important results these models are achieving in its last newsletter, noting that overall, inpatients experience better coordinated care, reduced length-of-stay, higher patient and family satisfaction and better health outcomes."

For years we looked outside Saskatchewan for inspiration on how to transform our health care system. While we did gain valuable knowledge, genuine transformation of our system will be driven by the strength within. It is building on the best practices our health care providers model every day that will enable us to improve care and achieve better health outcomes for the people of Saskatchewan.

Creating a structure that can help maximize these strengths is something we are being very mindful of as we progress through the second phase of transition for our out-of-scope leadership positions. This week we are excited to announce Area Chiefs of Staff and the first round of successful Executive Directors and welcome them to their new roles. Please visit the Leadership and Structure page of our website for a complete list of names and to learn more about our senior leadership team. Please watch for more names to be announced on this site in the coming weeks.

Please remember that you can access these weekly updates on the Transition page of the Intranet. The Transition Guide serves as a great resource for you to see what the plan is moving forward and serves as a reminder of how far we have already come on our journey.

If you have questions, feedback or ideas about this process, please feel free to

Scott Livingstone
CEO, Saskatchewan Health Authority

Transition Update - February 14, 2018

Saskatchewan is at a critical juncture. It has been noted by many commentators that the trial over the death of Colten Boushie exposed deep divisions in our society. This is undoubtedly right, but the key point moving forward is that it exposed these divisions, it did not create them.

The divisions and wounds we have created over many generations are deep. Historically, Indigenous peoples have been subjected to treatment that has left them disadvantaged economically and socially, leaving scars that will take us another generation to repair.

We need to be honest about the results of our history. Health outcomes for our Indigenous peoples lag far behind those of non-Indigenous peoples. Our aspiration to ensure high-quality, timely health care regardless of where people live is most challenged by this reality. We must acknowledge that Indigenous people are not served well by our existing system and suffer disproportionately from poverty and prejudice. We must do better.

Overall, system-wide transformation will take patience, perseverance and time. But the public outbreak of culturally insensitive comments on social media and in other venues must be addressed immediately. We need to re-affirm our commitment to mutual respect in our facilities and in all of our communications with patients, family, staff, residents and all who touch the health system. This includes remembering that we all have a responsibility to promote an environment that is spiritually, culturally, socially, emotionally and physically safe.

One of the principles in the Truth and Reconciliation report notes that reconciliation is a process of healing relationships. In the health care system, we know intuitively that any physical healing process starts with understanding the full extent of the injury. It is no different culturally or historically. We can only engage in this healing process if we remember that the wounds we are seeing are not new, but ones we have let fester.

With the creation of the Saskatchewan Health Authority, we have the opportunity to move forward on system-wide initiatives that strengthen our bonds across diverse groups, while still celebrating our differences. Making meaningful progress on the disparities we see in health outcomes will depend on it. Given the strength of character we see every day among our health care providers, I am confident we will be able to use the difficult moment we are in right now to create real change in the years to come.

If you have questions, feedback or ideas about how we can address the issues outlined in this message, please feel free to

Scott Livingstone
CEO, Saskatchewan Health Authority

Transition Update - February 7, 2018

I am pleased to report this week on a number of key actions and initiatives that are helping advance the integration of our health system:

The Saskatchewan Health Authority (SHA) now has a provincial library service. The SHA library website integrates all Saskatchewan Health Information Resources Program (SHIRP) resources with Health Authority subscriptions to make access as seamless as possible for all physicians and staff.

Work is underway to integrate the Saskatchewan Association of Health Organizations (SAHO) and the Physician Recruitment Agency of Saskatchewan (PRAS) into the SHA. The target is summer 2018 to have this work completed.

The key financial elements to support the transfer of the Saskatchewan Disease Control Laboratory, recently renamed the Roy Romanow Provincial Laboratory, to the SHA on April 1, 2018 are largely complete.

One of the areas of success we are seeing in the early days of the SHA is the new dyad model built into the organizational structure of the Executive Leadership Team (ELT). This model pairs Vice Presidents with Physician Executives as co-leaders in each clinical portfolio. These Physician Executives play an equal role to the Vice-Presidents, with shared responsibility and accountability for performance of the health system in their respective areas of responsibility. The model is already proving its value by ensuring physicians play an active role in the planning and decision-making of the SHA. We will continue to communicate more in the weeks and months ahead on how the dyad model works and how it is going to strengthen our ability to transform health care in Saskatchewan.

As with any large-scale transition, there are challenges. One of them is fulfilling a key priority of ELT to improve communications with our practitioners and staff. We continue to work on strengthening the communication channels that reach all of our internal and external stakeholders. Last week gave us one small victory: we were able to reach thousands of health staff and physicians through a newly created email distribution list for everyone with an SHA email address. However small the victory, it was a tangible sign of our integration.

Small victories like this one are creating the foundation for our larger efforts to transform health care in Saskatchewan. On any given day, the change may seem imperceptible, but each small step forward adds up. Every day we make progress towards a more integrated health system that improves access to high quality, timely patient care for all Saskatchewan residents. Thank you for your support on this journey.

You can access these weekly updates on the Transition page of the Intranet. If you have questions, feedback or ideas, please feel free to

Scott Livingstone
CEO, Saskatchewan Health Authority