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Blog: Infoway Connects

Learn more about the latest development in digital health, patient stories, new findings and best practices for implementation.

Bridging the Change Leadership Gap

Posted on November 16, 2017 by Sandy Pagotto

Despite the vast array of change management models available to plan and guide change, most change initiatives fail outright or fail to achieve their full promise. Often this is because the critical factors that impact people are missing or are not appropriately considered. Successful change needs management to plan and organize, and leadership to engage and lead people through the inevitable challenges of change.

Patient Portals Enable Proactive — Rather Than Reactive — Health Care

Posted on November 16, 2017 by J. Tyler Moss 

My experience with eHealth Saskatchewan’s Citizen Health Information Portal (CHIP) began in the spring of 2016. A request went out to residents of Saskatchewan to sign on to the pilot project; I did, and became one of the initial 1,000 participants.

Top 10 Downloaded Benefits Evaluation Reports

Posted on November 15, 2017 by Kate Perkins

In the spirit of celebrating Digital Health Week, we were curious to see what benefits evaluation reports peeked the interest of website visitors over the past three years. These evaluations help us understand how our investments impact Canadians and the health care system and help inform and improve future projects. Many researchers and jurisdictional leaders use the reports as lessons learned documents for implementing, adopting and promoting digital health tools.

Life Really IS Measured By the Breaths You Take

Posted on November 14, 2017 by Linda V

When I was growing up, I wanted to be just like my big sister and one day I discovered that, alas, it was happening. I didn’t get her long black hair, rapier wit or superior intelligence. Instead, I got her chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and her prescription for home oxygen. There was one major difference, however. She got homebound and depressed and I got telehomecare and an amazing support system.

Digital Health Can Enable Better Health Outcomes

Posted on November 13, 2017 by Nancy Lefebre

With an important focus in health care on person- and family-centered care, the move towards technology seems common-sense. People are using technology to make their lives easier. We have heard time and again, that people want care where they are — in their homes — and they want health care that seamlessly fits in to their lives. To do this successfully, we need to rethink and restructure the way care is delivered and funded, with technology as a key enabler to this. There is tremendous opportunity as we shift toward “home as the hub of care,” to expand the use of digital technology and integrated funding models. 

Making an Impact: The Future of Connected Devices

Posted on November 7, 2017, by Dr. Sunny Kumar

A few years ago, I met with a company that had designed a consumer grade technology to monitor the pattern and frequency of leg muscle contractions during cycling. The information would be fed back in real time to the individuals’ mobile device. The rationale for this was, knowledge of these parameters could improve performance and reduce injury. At the time, I recall thinking this was a “cool” innovation, but with limited impact.

EMR Adoption in Canada on the Rise

Posted on November 03, 2017 by Chad Leaver

Six years ago when I began my role at Infoway, adoption of electronic medial records among primary care practices in Canada was at 56 per cent. In the next two years, through partnerships and collaboration we established a growing body of evidence supporting the value of EMR use in primary care and released a national study in 2013 estimating the emerging value of EMR use in community-based care at $1.3 billion.

Telehomecare: Remote Data Monitoring Can Promote Self-Management of Health

Posted on October 31, 2017 by Heather Pezzola

So what is telehomecare and what does it do?

Telehomecare is a remote monitoring system where a patient, with a specific, identified chronic disease is set up in their home with monitoring devices such as an electronic tablet, blood pressure cuff, oximeter and scale. The patient electronically sends their blood pressure, oxygen saturation level, pulse, weight (lumped together, called vital signs), as well as responses to various health questions at a set frequency to a nurse. This information is reviewed by the nurse for significant changes and indications of change in health. The nurse will follow up with the patient with any directions in health care needs and provide routine education on the patient’s chronic disease.

Healthy Behaviour Data Challenge Finalists Named

Posted on October 26, 2017 by Timothy Luk and Shahab Shahnazari

Finalists for Phase 1 of the Healthy Behaviour Data Challenge — an initiative designed to find innovative way to identify new data sources and methods for monitoring public health — have been selected. Successful submissions were received from academic and private sector teams from across Canada, with intriguing concepts such as use of home thermostats, smartphone sensors, and social media activity to track and measure indicators of healthy behaviour.

e-Prescribing: Safety. Quality. Both.

Posted on October 24, 2017 by Dr. Michael Hamilton

I’m looking forward to e-prescribing for the convenience and efficiency, but also for the potential enhancements in quality and safety.

Patient Advisor: Digital Health Tools Help Canadians Partner for Better Outcomes

Posted on October 17 by Garry Laxdal

In 2015, I was diagnosed with rectal cancer and immediately began both radiation and chemotherapy treatments followed by major surgery (abdominoperineal resection). This was followed by four additional months of chemotherapy. Prior to my cancer, I was a technology business owner and very active physically, golfing on average 100 times a year, and an avid hunter. The great news is I’m now two years post-surgery and all tests and scans since treatment are negative and the prognosis is good. While I’m a little disappointed that I’ve only golfed 97 times this year, I’m gearing up for another successful hunting season.

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One Quarter of Canadians Using Connected Objects to Track their Health and Well-being

Posted on September 26, 2017 by Claire Bourget

Internet of Things refers to connected objects that have a variety of uses and a capacity to communicate and transfer data.

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Canadians’ Use of Mobile Health Apps and Connected Devices to Support Health and Well-being Gaining Momentum

Posted on September 19, 2017 by Chad Leaver

Summer theatre festivals across the country attract Canadians and travellers alike to experience the performing arts. Recently, I took in Guys and Dolls — the classic musical at the Stratford festival in Ontario. The reviews were right – an absolute sensation! Spontaneous applause erupted frequently after incredible dance and musical numbers...and every time the audience applauded, I couldn’t help but notice the white-lights, like stars, that illuminated the auditorium. I realized these ‘stars’ (and there were many) were in fact smart connected devices — wearables like watches, wristbands or bracelets — which are used to track health and well-being biometric data.

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Navigating the Realities of Citizens’ Access to their Heath Information: Direct Access to Laboratory Results in Canada

Posted on August 29, 2017 by Chad Leaver

Across the world, citizen’s access to their own health information through secure online tools are becoming a hallmark of modernized health care systems and a catalyst for advancing access to health services and person-centered models of care.

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Has Anyone Asked the Patient?

Posted on August 15, 2017 by Kate Perkins

There is a lot happening in the digital health space — almost too much to wrap our heads around. To ensure clinician uptake, it is essential that digital health solutions and tools can be seamlessly integrated into clinician workflow. But what is becoming increasingly apparent is that the needs of patients are equally important. Since patients are an equal partner in their health care, doesn’t it make sense they have a say in which digital health tools are developed?

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Evolving our Approach to Better Serve Canadians

Posted on August 8, 2017 by Michael Green

While remaining focused on our vision of healthier Canadians through innovative digital health solutions during the 2016-2017 fiscal year, we continued to evolve Infoway’s approach to better serve Canadians.

Top Benefits Evaluation Reports and Activities April – June 2017

Posted on August 1, 2017 by Kate Perkins

Is it just me or did the last quarter fly by? It was a busy time for our Evaluation Services team as well – lots of great and interesting evaluations on the go.

Better Health Together: A Citizen’s Perspective

Posted on July 24, 2017 by Kerri MacKay

Stories are rarely created alone — and neither is change. In March, Infoway brought together health care change makers from across Canada  to share our stories and experiences about digital health within our own health regions. Over two days, 34 patients, caregivers, technology developers, and more helped construct a vision for digital health in Canada for the next ten years, together.

Myth: Digital Health Apps Are Not Evidence-based and Do Not Work

Posted on July 18, 2017 by Bobby Gheorghiu

Infoway recently launched a digital health myths busting campaign, and as part of the campaign, we asked you to submit myths you’d like us to bust. One myth you asked us to debunks was, “Digital health apps are not evidence-based and do not work.” In order to tackle this myth, I enlisted the help of a clinician and researcher in the digital health space, who eagerly provided me with his insight. Dr. Kendall Ho is a professor at the Department of Emergency Medicine at the UBC Faculty of Medicine. He was the Faculty’s eHealth Strategy Office Director and his research focuses on digital technologies for innovative clinical practices: telehealth, wearables, health apps, social media, and patient engagement. 

Updated Toolkit is the Go-to Resource for Electronic Medication Reconciliation Implementation

Posted on July 11, 2017 by Seema Nayani

We all know the importance of medication reconciliation, so why is there a significant lack of wide spread implementation of a formalized process throughout all care transitions such as admission, transfer or discharge? Medication reconciliation (MedRec) is the effective communication of a patient’s medication information across transition points in the health care system. MedRec, as many of us working in this space understand, is quite complex and actually implementing this process is challenging. With the increasing complexity of patients’ medication regimens and the multitude of information sources that need to be considered, it is no wonder that organizations aspiring for fully integrated MedRec are looking to electronic MedRec (eMedRec) solutions.

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