Written by Tracy Irwin, Executive Director, Innovation, Planning and Transformation

Over the past year, teams across Fraser Health have been developing innovative ideas and projects using funding from our new innovation grants.

One year ago our leaders convened to discuss innovation at the Management Team Business Meeting. Their goal was to determine how to encourage innovation within our complex health care environment.

At that time our CEO, Michael Marchbank, announced new community innovation funds designed to spark grassroots innovation, provide opportunities for staff to bring their ideas to life and build momentum. We are grateful to our foundation partners for contributing funds to these grants.

At the Engagement Summit in February we awarded an additional five Growing Your Idea innovation grants with funding provided by the Employee Experience portfolio.

All of these grants have now completed their development cycles, generating forward-thinking ideas which improved quality of care. Teams are now discussing project outcomes and opportunities for spreading the innovations in future. Among the projects funded:

  • Creating an activity area for dementia patients at Chilliwack General Hospital to improve their cognitive function and experience while in care.
  • Developing an e-newsletter and therapeutic training videos for families of clients with eating disorders to support their recovery at home.
  • Using Skype in Mission to connect home-bound clients with their primary care team in real time.

Now, additional programs are offering innovation grants to tap into the creativity of our point-of-care staff. Our Patient Experience and Chief Nursing and Allied Health Officer, Jacqueline Per, announced grants for Innovation in Nursing during Nursing Week in June. Four grants were awarded to nurse-led teams across the region. Look forward to more information about the nursing grants in the coming weeks.

We can see sparks of innovation starting to light up all across Fraser Health. I’m proud to say our goal of adopting an innovative mindset is being embraced. I’m impressed with the creativity and passion of our staff, and the vision of our leaders who are finding new ways to fan the flames of innovation in our organization.

In the coming months we will be exploring new ways to support innovation and advance partnerships with other organizations to introduce new perspectives and ways of working into our health care system.

Stay tuned for more details about innovative projects and funding opportunities.

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