New, online quality improvement course for personal support workers made possible by Closing the Gap Healthcare

February 11, 2016

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Personal support workers (PSWs) across Ontario will soon have access to a comprehensive, online course on quality improvement – thanks to a generous donation from Closing the Gap Healthcare.

Connie Clerici

The company has committed to contributing, over the next three years, to a new e-learning fund which will be administered by the Institute of Health Policy, Management & Evaluation (IHPME) at the University of Toronto.  This fund will support the development of a new course which will address quality improvement theory, principles and best practices, while incorporating relevant case studies and examples. This course will be the first to tailor quality improvement training to the specific needs of PSWs.

“This is an exciting opportunity for personal support workers and other home care providers,” said Connie Clerici, president and chief executive officer at Closing the Gap. “Our support of IHPME’s new training program will provide further skills and knowledge to develop solutions to make health services more efficient, sustainable and accessible to as many people as possible.”

Clerici appreciates the importance of a creating a well-equipped workforce of home care providers. In addition to providing services at hospitals and clinics, Closing the Gap’s health care providers work with clients in their homes, schools, workplaces and long-term care homes. The group is devoted to contributing to a sustainable system health system where individuals feel empowered.

Now more than ever, the need for strong home care services that lead to better patient outcomes and improved performance is crucial.

In recent years, the number of Canadians receiving home care has grown considerably. Additionally, many home care recipients are living with chronic, complex health conditions. As a result, the amount of care provided through PSWs has steadily increased. Though new PSWs are backed with the required formal and standardized education, PSWs who are more advanced in their careers could benefit from enhanced training.

With these issues in mind, this new online course will provide PSWs with an understanding of quality improvement terminology and solid approaches to change management, leadership and improvement initiatives in health care. IHPME will leverage its quality improvement expertise to design engaging and relevant course components – with input from experts who understand the needs of PSWs.

“Closing the Gap’s commitment to quality mirrors IHPME’s dedication to understanding health outcomes of exceptionally high quality,” said IHPME director Adalsteinn Brown. “This e-learning course will drive intellectual exchange and transform how people think and what we can do to improve health care. We are thankful for Closing the Gap’s support and vision.”

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