In June 1997, Canoe Creek, Soda Creek, and Williams Lake Band with a combined population of 850 united to begin the health transfer process. This was facilitated through several meetings in the spring of 1997 with each of the communities invited to identify health programs and concerns with the state of their health and the services they received at the time.
The pre-health transfer process began and with a team effort in each community and vision of the transfer completing by 1999, a contribution agreement was signed after submitting the proposal for the first stages of funding. The three member bands are members of the Northern Secwepemc Tribal Council and the process of the pre-health transfer began with funding and meetings held at the tribal council office. The meetings in each of the communities and the meetings with Health Canada and the Chiefs of the three bands continued until such time as all needs assessments and community feedback had been given and all participants believed they had a Health Plan that would work.
In June 2000, the first five-year agreement for Three Corners Health Services Society (TCHSS) was signed and the small staff of four moved into a location in town that was decided upon by community members and the Chiefs to provide equality and ease of access. Following the first three years of leasing a space, the commuity made the decision to purchase their own building.
After completing the first five years of transfer and signing the second five year agreement the Society then entered into the Accountability Framework Health Plan in the year 2009. The Board of Directors, Chiefs, and community members have been part of the discussion for the need of accountability from all parties. It is important that we can determine what changes are being made in health by collecting our own data to see if we are indeed moving forward to healthier communities.
ACCREDITATION/QUALITY ASSURANCE/RISK MANAGEMENT
In 2006, the Society entered into the accreditation process with Accreditation Canada. Accreditation is a standardized process for measuring an organizations standards against national standards, that have been developed by Accreditation Canada through research and best practice development.
The process is a three year cycle (moving to a four year cycle) and at the end of the three year cycle, surveyors from Accreditation Canada come to the Society to conduct a peer reivew of the Society’s programming and operating standards.
The Society completed their first survey in March of 2009 and as a result the Society received Accreditation with Report. The Society was very proud to have accomplished this feat, as this was a new process and much work had to be done to align the Society’s standards with the standards set out by Accreditation Canada.
The Accreditation Canada surveyors were back on site March 11th – 14th, 2012 to conduct the Society’s second survey. The survey resulted in the Society receiving Accreditation with Exemplary Standing. The staff take great pride in participating in on-going quality improvement initiatives and ensuring client safety is at the forefront of service delivery.
Quote from the Accreditation Surveyors Final Report
“The centre has a strong leadership under the direction of a skilled and seasoned health director and they have forged ahead with many innovative programs. They are commended for their strong focus on providing services that meet the needs of their people with a particular focus on a variety of excellent programs for health promotion and disease prevention that incorporate both traditional and contemporary methods.
They have embraced the accreditation process and clearly see that all the effort they have put into the entire program has not only made them a better more efficient and effective agency with a strong commitment to quality and safety but they have become leaders in the field. It has raised the bar for them.
There is a genuine team atmosphere at TCHSS and staff feel supported and encouraged to provide the best care and services possible. There is a strong commitment by the organization’s leaders to ensure there is a positive working environment, rewarding staff when appropriate and ensuring work does not become overpowering.”
MUSTIMUHW – ELECTRONIC HEALTH RECORD
In April of 2006, we were able to fully implement the Mustimuhw electronic health record. Full implementation means that the Community health Nurses utilize Mustimuhw to do all charting in each of the communities. The database is able to track immunizations, nurses charting notes (eliminating hard copy files), and home care activities. The nurses are able to input data right in the community, as the data is replicated back to the main office nightly.
The system is able to generate reporting for Medical Transportation, e-SDRT services, Immunization Coverage, and CPNP. As well as reporting, the system is also able to generate homecare scheduling for the homecare workers and clients, and has the capability of separating the clients by community. We also have the ability to generate statistics based on database fields for statistical purposes.
In order to utilize the system to its fullest capacity and keep up-to-date with Health Canada reporting requirements and community needs, we are continually having to install updates and re-evaluate needs, as well as the capabilities of the system. For purposes of gathering data for the new framework until all programs are utilizing Mustimuhw, hardcopies will be used as well.
Our Health Stations located in Soda Creek, and Sugar Cane operate on a satellite connection, as ADSL has not yet been installed. Our Soda Creek health station has a vidoconferencing unit located in their boardroom. Both our main office located in Williams Lake and our health station located in Dog Creek has ADSL. In July 2007, Dog Creek Health Station had the last mile installed at their health station, and received a videoconferencing unit from eHealth Solutions Unit.
We look forward to moving ahead in telehealth and the opportunity to support any upcoming initiatives. We would like to explore new ways of working with the Province, Interior Health Authority and Health Canada, using technology as one of many tools to close the gap in First Nations Health.
Success of the telehealth planning initiative is dependent on the ability of the Society to continue to secure funding for the eHealth Program. This position has been the core component of our eHealth program and is essential for the current projects to continue. It is our hope that we can continue to move forward through support of this position from FNIH.
BC & YUKON FIRST NATIONS PANORAMA IMPLEMENTATION PROJECT
The Society is participating in the BC & Yukon First Nations Panorama Implementation Project with the province to establish relationships with the health authority and provide our community heatlh nurses with access to the public health information system. This is an exciting project and more information can be found at www.PathwaysToTechnology.com