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10/16/2014 6:00 PM

A nurse-led initiative to foster a patient safety culture at Renfrew Victoria Hospital (RVH) in Renfrew, Ontario is recognized as one of the three recipients of the 2014 Innovation in Patient Safety Education Award from the Patient Safety Education Program – Canada (PSEP – Canada).

“Quality and safety is embedded in our mission, vision and values as a high priority for our organization,” says Randy Penney, President and Chief Executive Officer, Renfrew Victoria Hospital. “The PSEP – Canada program aligns with everything that our Board, Senior Management and entire hospital believes in. We are all very excited to receive the Innovation in Patient Safety Education Award and to recognize our frontline nurses for their focus on safety.”


(Left to right) Randy Penney (CEO & President RVH), Dr. George Hermanson (RVH Board of Directors), Barbara Symington (RVH Board of Directors), Keanan Hunt (RVH Board of Directors), Joan Fernandez (CPSI), Charlene Hanniman (RVH Nurse), Cindy Walker (RVH Nurse), Christine Ferguson (RVH VP of Patient Care Services), Marg Tubman (RVH Board of Directors), Andy Boldt (Chair, RVH Board of Directors), Richard Lester (RVH Board of Directors), Catherine O'Neil (RVH Board of Directors), Sandi Heins (RVH Board of Directors), Dr. Steve Radke (RVH) and Barbara Westgarth (RVH Board of Directors)

 “We provided our nurses with education and support and look what happened as a result!” says Chris Ferguson, Vice-President of Patient Services. “When you take people out of their clinical role and provide these opportunities, it is different. The nurses faced resistance from staff and they had to learn strategies to overcome that. They grew a lot as nurses in a leadership role.  We supported them, but they were on the ground running and the ones that did the work.  The PSEP – Canada education program provides the direction, tools and resources, but what it is so great is for our nurses to be acknowledged and for that, we are thankful.”

“Our nurses led the education to ensure it was defined specifically for the unit by one of their peers,” adds Chris Ferguson. “The frontline staff involvement was the key to our success. The modules that we chose to implement were about safety, but it really enhanced communication between the interdisciplinary teams because it involved others beyond nursing.”

To acknowledge that it was the work of frontline nurses on the unit that culminated in the Award, the nurses involved were invited to a Board meeting in September 2014, to be recognized for their efforts.  Along with the Award, RVH received a free registration for a future PSEP – Canada conference. They have already scheduled another nurse to take the PSEP – Canada training during an October 2014 session.

In December 2013, RVH was accredited with Exemplary Standing, which means the organization exceeded the most rigorous requirements set by Accreditation Canada for quality and safety in healthcare. “To achieve exemplary standing is a significant accomplishment that acknowledges our dedication and commitment to safe care,” adds Chris Ferguson.

Click here to learn more about how Renfrew Victoria has adopted the PSEP – Canada program to advance its patient safety culture. (The article was posted in January 2014.)