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November 18, 2022

Saskatchewan Health Quality Council celebrates milestone birthday

For 20 years, the Saskatchewan Health Quality Council (HQC) has been providing leadership in quality improvement (QI) in the health sector and beyond.

This journey into improvement began even earlier, in 2001, with the Saskatchewan Commission on Medicare’s release of a report called Caring for Medicare – Sustaining a Quality System (also known as the Fyke Report). Led by Kenneth J. Fyke, a public servant and former deputy health minister in Saskatchewan and British Columbia, the report proposed a profound transformation of the health-care culture of Saskatchewan. Among other recommendations, the report identified the need for a council to monitor the quality of the province’s health care. As a result, the Saskatchewan Health Quality Council—Canada’s first—was established in Saskatchewan in 2002.

In its early years, HQC’s primary goal was to build a strong foundation in improvement science and methods within the health system. This involved providing tools and training for leadership development, clinician engagement, and measurement infrastructure, which helped organizations build their own capacity for QI. In recent years, HQC has expanded its efforts by collaborating with new partners and helping them learn the science of QI. This includes working with First Nations and Métis partners as they strive for improved health and wellness in their communities. We have also partnered with human services and community-based organizations to optimize programs and services that support the mental health and well-being of Saskatchewan citizens. By taking the QI approach from the health-care environment and applying it to other sectors, HQC can contribute to better health for all.

“HQC had an important role in establishing a focus on quality health care in Saskatchewan,” said Dr. Susan Shaw, board chair for HQC. “We did this by building strong, effective partnerships with the Saskatchewan Ministry of Health, the Saskatchewan Health Authority, the Saskatchewan Medical Association and eHealth Saskatchewan, among other countless organizations. We’ve also worked closely with patients and families, clinicians, administrators, researchers, students, and QI specialists to accelerate improvement in the quality of health and health care in Saskatchewan.”

“Since 2002, HQC was vital in establishing QI infrastructure within the health system,” said Tracey Sherin, CEO of HQC. “We’ve built capacity in QI science and methodology, created meaningful connections and spread our passion for learning as we sought to make a difference. Twenty years in, it’s inspiring to look back and see how we’ve made an impact, knowing the best is yet to come.”

As part of its 20th birthday celebration, HQC is looking to hear from you! Join us on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages and tell us why you love QI. Be sure to tag us—each message will be entered into a draw for a QI prize pack.

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