North York General tops in province

Accreditation Canada has recognized North York General Hospital as one of the province’s leading healthcare facilities, awarding them with its highest accreditation status.

The hospital received Accreditation with Exemplary Standing, the highest designation available from Accreditation Canada, a not-for-profit, independent organization that rates the quality of care in hospitals.

The designation means the hospital attained the highest level of performance and quality in the more than 1,800 criteria upon which Accreditation Canada bases their evaluation.

North York General Hospital president and CEO, Dr. Tim Rutledge, told the Town Crier he saw the recognition as a commendation of the hospital’s track record.

“It’s really an affirmation that all the work we’ve done around quality and care and patient safety has been recognized,” said Rutledge. “The accreditation team said that the commitment to equality and safety was evident from the boardroom to the bedside, and that was quite a nice validation of the culture that we’ve developed here.”

That culture is one in which individual patient care and safety are seen as the highest priorities for the hospital.

“It sort of permeates throughout the whole organization to the front line staff,” Rutledge said. “When (Accreditation Canada) reported back, they said ‘What’s really special about this place is your people.’ ”

The accreditation process involves the organization speaking to frontline staff and quizzing them, as well as looking at patient care, administrative functions and community engagement.

Part of the reason North York General received the designation was for [url=]two pieces of technology it has implemented[/url]: a digital database that offers advice to doctors, and a barcode system created to ensure accuracy in prescriptions.

The two pieces of technology previously won North York General two separate awards.

Rutledge said the innovative technologies were implemented with the specific intention of improving the hospital’s functions.

“We haven’t been implementing technology for its own sake,” he said. “Rather, we’ve been implementing technology when we know it’s going to improve the quality of care we can provide.”

North York General is also leading the province in meeting provincial wait time targets for surgery.

Despite the positive track record, Rutledge said the hospital is constantly working to evolve.

“I wouldn’t say this means we’re perfect … people at this hospital are committed to continually improving and continually learning,” he said.

Having said that, the hospital CEO said he’s thrilled North York General has been recognized for their commitment to improving healthcare.

“I’m proud on behalf of our people,” Rutledge said. “This isn’t something that the senior team accomplished, this is something that the team at North York General as a whole accomplished.”