Improving the clinical sectors
Patient in CT scanner

Here are some of the innovations and success stories in clinical services in 2017–2018.

We unveiled our new Cardiac Computed Tomography (CT) Scanner, obtained with support from the Foundation. The population in the region now has access to cutting-edge technology for cardiac diagnosis that is fast, reliable and causes no discomfort. A second CT scanner, installed directly in the Emergency Department, now makes it possible for Emergency patients to obtain faster diagnosis and reduce their time in Emergency.

  • The scanner takes 320 simultaneous images in 0.275 second

We opened new temporary beds in the mental health program, bringing crucial relief in a sector with long waiting lists, particularly for patients who require care in French. Opening these new beds, with just a few weeks notice, required an extraordinary level of mobilization and cooperation among several hospital sectors.

Since April 1, 2017, Montfort is the organization responsible for Ottawa East Health Link. Health Links represent a new way of coordinating healthcare at the local level. They target patients who are receiving care from different providers, often in a non-coordinated fashion. Generally, these patients are elderly and suffering from several chronic diseases or mental illness. These patients often go to Emergency to receive care and are repeatedly admitted to hospital, while they could be receiving care in their community.

Since August 2017 :

  • support to some 200 patients
  • referrals from 25 regional partners

Fall prevention is a daily challenge in hospitals around the world. Several initiatives are underway at Montfort, notably a pilot project on 6C and 4C that identifies patients at risk of falling by adding a shooting star on the scoreboard at the head of their bed.

  • 30% reduction in falls since January 2017

Montfort’s Charter of Patient Rights and Responsibilities was revised in light of our new mission, vision and values. Patient-partners participated in developing the Charter right from the initial phase of the revision. Then, we posted the draft of the Charter of Patient Rights and Responsibilities on Montfort’s Facebook page, inviting people to share their comments. The message was seen some 3000 times and the comments were unanimously positive. The new charter has been posted in public spaces throughout the hospital.

The expression “alternate level of care” (ALC) refers to a patient who occupies a bed in a hospital while awaiting a place in another establishment, such as a long term care facility. This patient does not require intensive resources or services provided in a hospital, but for various reasons, is not able to go home. Following discussions with the Champlain Local Health Integration Network, for one week we were given priority access to long term beds, which allowed us to transfer many patients to an environment better adapted to their needs. Moreover, an interprofessional group meets twice a week to review the options available to families, which also allows families to be better and more quickly informed.

Call bell response time (for calling nurses) is directly linked to patient satisfaction levels. Indeed, anyone who is hospitalized and not feeling well does not want to wait a long time after having asked for help. A nurse on 5C noted the high level of complaints related to call bell wait times and, as part of her Lean Green Belt training, put in place a series of initiatives to resolve the problem.

Average wait time after a patient call on 5C :

  • 10 minutes in 2017
  • 4 minutes in 2018

Like the other hospitals in the province, Montfort’s grounds became 100% smoke-free on January 1, 2018. This process involved several awareness-raising initiatives among hospital staff, as well as a regional campaign with other hospitals in the region to raise awareness among patients and their loved ones.

Montfort responded to a request from the Mental Health Commission of Canada to produce two video testimonials and a short feature on mental health. The videos were produced under the supervision of Montfort’s Mental Health Program in order to ensure the authenticity of the testimonials and the use of best practices. The videos will be integrated into the Commission’s Mental Health First Aid course, given in French across Canada.

In 2017, 45 staff members received training offered by the LHIN on Indigenous cultural needs and some 15 others are already registered for the next wave of training, in 2018.

A team from the Trillium Network visited Montfort in 2017. They came to recognize members of the hospital for the work done to save lives through organ donations. During the celebration, the hospital received a plaque, and recognition certificates were awarded to “Hidden Heroes” in organ donation at Montfort. People working in the Operating Room, in Intensive Care and on 4A were honoured during the brief ceremony.

  • In 2017, Montfort achieved a 100% conversion rate for organ donations

Lastly, long-term work continued on several projects during the year

For example, with five other hospitals in the region, Montfort is a member of the Champlain network: Champlain Association of MEDITECH Partners, or CHAMP, with the goal of significantly upgrading the MEDITECH software, which manages our patients’ electronic files. Sharing a common MEDITECH system, operating with a single database, helps to cut down on the cost of equipment and software, as well as the cost of training and technical support. Above all, by working together, we are able to pool our experiences and strengths, and benefit from technology to improve the experience of patients, clinicians and staff.

In addition, this year again we worked closely with Accreditation Canada, a national organization that supports the continuous improvement of healthcare organizations. It goes without saying that the teams throughout the hospital put a great deal of care into preparing for the accreditation survey, an assessment by peers working in health institutions in Canada, which took place in April 2018. Montfort is also proud to be a training site for Accreditation Canada surveyors, particularly Francophone surveyors.

  • Each year, 40 or so surveyors-in-training come for a half-day simulated survey
  • 3 members of the Montfort team are themselves accreditation surveyors

Three of our practices were recognized as leading practices by Accreditation Canada, meaning “these practices are leading in a service delivery area in a health care or service setting, or for a specific health care challenge.”

Our 3 leading practices: :
  • The logic model for the Mental Health Program
  • Patient-centred wellness check
  • A patient-partner redefines the flow of the surgical program

Promoting training and research
Employee sharing results of her research

Here are some of the innovations and success stories related to our status as an academic teaching hospital in 2017–2018.

This year, we highlighted the 25th anniversary of medical residencies at Montfort. In 1992, Montfort signed an affiliation agreement with the University of Ottawa to train family medicine residents in French. The 25th anniversary of the program was celebrated in April 2018, during the reunion sponsored by the Montfort Hospital Foundation.

  • 200+ physicians have been trained to offer exemplary care in French

We celebrated the results of the Canadian Matching Resident Service, the national system that matches medical residents with positions in hospitals across the country. We were very pleased to learn that all positions offered at Montfort will be filled this year. In addition to 13 positions in Family Medicine, Montfort will receive residents in Internal Medicine, Obstetrics-Gynaecology, General Surgery and Psychiatry.

  • 17 medical residents positions

The Assertive Community Treatment Team (ACTT) has a dozen mental health specialists who work for Montfort, from their base in the Vanier sector. They provide support and guidance in the person’s living environment to Francophone adults with severe and persistent mental health problems, including schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and psychosis. As part of a pilot project funded by the ISM, research by ACTT has shown that people suffering from severe mental disorders improve when they integrate “made-to-measure” physical activities into their daily lives.

Under an agreement signed in June 2017, physicians working at Montfort can now devote more hours to training future physicians and conducting research in French. The Alternate Funding Plan is a contract between physicians, Montfort, the University of Ottawa and the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long Term Care to provide financial support for medical staff who wish to teach or conduct research. This initiative will generate positive spinoffs not only for patients at Montfort, students and medical residents, but ultimately for our entire community.

In June 2017, a team from Montfort went to Toronto to participate in a hackathon, an event during which teams looked for digital solutions to various problems, in this case related to mental health. Their goal was to create a new prototype to solve a telehealth problem, more specifically to find a solution to digital stress for health professionals who have to manage the constant influx of information. In one day, with the support of researchers affiliated with the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, they came up with CogNeat, an application featuring an artificial intelligence system, which will be developed over the course of next year.

Another mobile app that our teams worked on seeks to reduce the overuse and overpopulation of Emergency departments, and could be used by patients or their families to detect common acute medical symptoms. This application, called Symptoms Pal, will eventually lead to better self-triage of patients from the comfort of their home and will help them find the right service in the right location.

From September 2017 to April 2018, Montfort joined other hospitals in the region participating in the FLUID clinical trial, a large-scale project to compare two saline solutions. The objective is to assess the impact of saline solutions on patient readmission and mortality rates. Even a very small difference between the two products could represent significant advantages for our patients. For six months, all patients at Montfort were part of a pilot project, with the exception of patients in ambulatory care units and newborns.

All of these initiatives and others have contributed to ensuring that Montfort continues to rank among Canada’s top 40 research hospitals. In 2017, thanks to the work of the ISM, the hospital ranked 37th in Canada and 17th out of 20 in Ontario. Considering that our research institute was launched only five years ago, the fact that we are in fourth position in terms of increased research volume demonstrates the vitality of research at Montfort.

  • $7.706 million in research in 2016
  • A 15.1% increase compared to 2015
  • 55 researchers
  • 3 research chairs + 2 in development
Seeking administrative efficiency
Our team proudly displaying the new ID cards

Here are some of the innovations and success stories in hospital management in 2017–2018.

The Orléans Health Hub made major advances this year. In spring 2017, a survey was conducted to ascertain the population’s expectations of the Hub. Subsequently, a one-week workshop bringing together staff, physicians, volunteers, patient partners and members of the community led to a greater understanding of patient flow, which greatly influenced the work of the architects in the schematic design of the Hub. A town hall session was held in November 2017 to provide an update on this highly anticipated project and to answer questions. In January 2018, Montfort and Infrastructure Ontario issued a request for qualifications.

  • 476 participants to the survey
  • 120 attendees at the town hall session
  • 5 companies prequalified to respond to the invitation to tender (Summer 2018)

The issue of parking is a sensitive file for patients and visitors as well as for Montfort staff who drive to work. The parking team reviewed its entire process and several improvements were made over the last year.

  • When parking is full, an agent directs patients to available parking spaces elsewhere on the grounds.
  • An HPASS parking pass, launched at the end of 2016, offers an economical and practical option for patients and their loved ones, with options of 5-, 10- or 30-day passes, valid for one year.
  • The Whoosh system is now available in certain parking lots. These parking metres can be paid remotely by phone with a credit card. Visitors and patients who use this system can add a few minutes to their parking time while comfortably seated in the waiting room.
  • For those who do not wish to pay with their cell phone, several lots now offer the “pay and display” system, already well known on the streets of Ottawa.
  • There are now new reserved spaces for pregnant women in the visitor and employee parking.

Following the launch of Montfort’s new brand image, we introduced new ID cards for all those who work, volunteer or study at Montfort. With the new ID card, it is easier for patients and visitors to know who they are addressing and their role.

Recruiting qualified and bilingual staff is always a challenge for hospitals. Fortunately, the job offer page at Montfort is usually the most visited on the hospital’s website. Many candidates are interested in positions at Montfort. In order to improve the efficiency of the recruitment system, Human Resources introduced the Njoyn system, an applicant tracking system, in February 2018, for positions posted externally. Internal postings followed shortly after. The talent acquisition process will be simplified for both Human Resources and for employees and potential candidates, who can consult available positions 24/7, from any electronic platform.

Moreover, the Human Resources team at Montfort is proactively participating in job fairs in various colleges and universities in Ontario and Québec in order to recruit new members to the Montfort team. The ISM team, which has extensive experience with students and interns, is also joining forces with Human Resources. Outside the National Capital Region, several students are surprised to learn that we are the only Francophone academic teaching hospital in Ontario and want to find out more about the beautiful region of Eastern Ontario and the Outaouais.

In July 2017, Mélanie Dubé was appointed Vice-President of Finance. This choice was made following a national selection process, conducted by an agency specialized in recruiting executive staff. This was a wonderful example of Montfort’s desire to promote from within, since Ms. Dubé has worked for Montfort for close to 20 years. Starting her career as a respiratory therapist, she quickly climbed the ladder as a clinical manager, then director of Finance, while simultaneously pursuing studies in administration to become a certified management accountant.

Major roof renovations at the hospital started in fall 2017. With the early arrival of winter, the work had to be suspended until spring 2018 and will be completed during the summer of 2018.

In March 2018, the method for throwing out, recycling and shredding paper changed. The new recycling and shredding program will save money, increase file security and, ultimately, make it possible to redirect maintenance staff toward activities in the clinical units.

Other efforts have been made to “green” the hospital and reduce energy consumption. Measures have been taken for lighting and ventilation, for example with motion detectors in meeting rooms and some offices, as well as the installation of reusable sharps containers. These initiatives have had a significant impact and have allowed Montfort to climb in its ranking as a green hospital, done by the Canadian Coalition for Green Health Care, allowing the hospital to reach the silver level.

Energy use at Montfort

  • 2013: 221 gigajoules (GJ)
  • 2014: 202 GJ
  • 2015: 193,6 GJ
  • 2016: 187 GJ

Over the last few years, our quarterly surveys have shown that staff engagement has varied, without any significant advances. Hospital management decided to prioritize staff engagement in its strategic objectives. Focus groups led by a Lean consultant brought together employees from all work shifts and almost all departments in May 2017 to explore the causes of flagging engagement and, above all, to identify solutions. The resulting initiatives included the drafting of a Code of Conduct, unveiled in February 2018. Leading by example, the Code of Conduct was signed by the CEO, the participants in the discussion groups and the managers; a signing blitz was then held to encourage staff to sign the Code of Conduct.

  • 4 focus groups
  • 62 employees
  • 1 Code of Conduct

All of these initiatives and many others are posted in the “strategic control room,” set up in a public meeting room in the executive office. The strategic control room is a Lean tool that allows for visual management and discussion on actions to take to advance important elements, such as strategy and corporate projects, thereby promoting alignment, coherence and collaboration. And since the room is used for several meetings during any given day, information is visible to all, a testament to the transparency of our organization.

Promoting a healthy workplace
Patient in bed reading a greating card

Here are some of the innovations and success stories with a social angle in 2017–2018.

The members of Montfort have a long-standing interest in international aid. In February 2018, a volunteer team of physicians, surgeons, nurses, employees and students at Montfort, committed to developing our hospital’s presence in the world, formally joined forces under the name Montfort Global Health. The team’s mandate is to promote our hospital’s values in various countries, including Haiti, Burundi, Congo, Benin, Guatemala and Djibouti; many more will follow. Our hospital’s university mandate underpinned the decision to consolidate all of these activities, so that Montfort can take a consistent and coordinated approach to expanding its presence internationally.

In April 2017, we relaunched the Health and Wellness program for our employees. In addition to the successful activities that have been running for several years, such as Boot-Camp and the delivery of baskets of fresh vegetables during the growing season, many new activities have been introduced. Montfort employees can now enroll in activities at lunchtime or after work. The program includes yoga and meditation; painting and photography; Spanish; sushi-preparation and chocolate making…

The e-newsletter for Montfort staff was completely revamped in October 2017. Resolutely “person-centred,” in keeping with Montfort’s mission, the new Journal Montfort focuses on life at our hospital and its successes, as told by staff members, and each article is illustrated by one or several members of the Montfort team. Some of the articles are presented to the general public, on social media for example. Readership, which has been steadily rising since 2015, leapt as a result of this change, and staff members are spontaneously submitting more and more articles.

  • In a survey, staff members gave 4.3 stars out of 5 to the new Journal

Since December 2017, physicians and volunteers are invited to recognition activities for their years of service and to mark their retirement; this has also been the case for housekeeping staff, after they were repatriated to the Montfort team in early 2017. In the same spirit, this year, for the first time, two volunteers were among the finalists for the Asteria Awards at the Gala du mérite. These innovations are a testament to a growing collaboration and a harmonious integration among various sectors.

Our recognition activities:

  • 3 weeks of events
  • 346 people recognised for years of service…
  • … including 1 physician for 45 years of service
  • 26 retirees.

Until very recently, patients in Intensive Care had access to only two portable televisions for entertainment. The Montfort Hospital Foundation has now installed televisions screens in each patient’s room in Intensive Care, to the delight of staff members, who immediately noted increased satisfaction among patients and their loved ones.

In December 2017, over a hundred young Australian students sent bilingual hand-drawn greeting cards to patients at Montfort. The elementary students at Brookside College, in Caroline Springs, Australia, were inspired by their French teacher, Erin Ritchie, originally from Ottawa. Our patients really enjoyed receiving these Holiday greeting cards.

A delegation of hospital directors from Belgium dropped in at Montfort in September 2017 as part of a study tour organized by the Vlerick Business School. The 20 or so participants expressed their appreciation for some of Montfort’s unique approaches, including patient awareness and involvement in their own care, patient satisfaction, the Lean culture throughout the hospital and its alignment with our strategy and organizational goals, as well as the tools for implementing and measuring continuous improvement initiatives.

In January 2018, our hospital was once again named one of the National Capital Region's Top Employers. To explain Montfort's choice, the selection committee mentioned several reasons, including the awards given at the Gala du mérite, which celebrate the commitment of staff and their contributions to research, teaching and exemplary care. To make their selection, committee members assess the physical environment, work atmosphere, benefits, leave, communication with staff, performance management, training and community involvement.

  • For the 3rd time since 2015, one of the top employers in the region

We are very proud to be recognized as one of the best employers in the region. Indeed, it is thanks to the members of the Montfort team that we can offer exemplary person-centred care, as is our mission.

It is thanks to these men and women who live Montfort’s values on a daily basis that together we can achieve our vision: to be your hospital of reference for outstanding services, designed with you and for you.