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Boards whose members have quality and safety knowledge are more capable of fulfilling the fiduciary responsibilities on quality of care and patient safety. Quality and safety knowledge and skills can be learned by board members through the application of educational resources and programs. Boards ensure competence through recruitment, selection, competency development and board self-evaluation.

Tools and Resources

Boards Can Acquire Confidence to Lead through Learning about Quality and Patient Safety

Often board members do not have backgrounds in healthcare quality or safety. Boards must assess their collective strengths against the knowledge and skills needed to fulfil their roles and identify board development opportunities. Information can be effectively delivered to boards through educational sessions and learning modules. Boards can create opportunities to learn from one another. Organizations can learn from each other by sharing best practices and showcasing successful initiatives and practices through meetings, virtual networks, conferences and quality fairs. Board retreats can provide members with opportunities to learn and work together, and bring the board, senior leaders and other leaders in the same room. Board retreats can foster developing a shared agenda, as well as enable acquisition of quality improvement skills and knowledge.

Board Member Competencies

Board processes for recruitment or appointment of members can also focus on specific skill sets or competencies needed by the Board related to quality and patient safety. Boards should regularly assess their performance using instruments that help inform their dialogue and ongoing development.

  • Vancouver Island Health Authority Selection Criteria for Potential Directors 2007 (most recent version)
  • Board Evaluation Process Overview (OHA GCE form 7.10, p. 163)
  • Board Peer Assessment Questionnaire (OHA GCE form 7.9, p. 161)
  • Guideline on Creating a Board Self-Assessment Survey (OHA GCE form 7.11, p. 165)
  • Vancouver Island Health Authority Board of Directors Evaluation (most recent version)

Quality Committee of the Board

The Board should appoint members of the Quality Committee who have complementary knowledge and skill sets in quality, clinical care and patient safety.

  • Quality Committee Effectiveness Self-Assessment Survey
  • Sample Committee Self-Assessment Survey (OHA GCE Guidelines form 7.12, p. 172)
  • Quality Committee External Assessment of Effectiveness Questionnaire