Monday, December 10 saw a number of staff from Diabetes Health Centre at St. Paul’s stop by and offer up their insights, both from the perspective of their role as well as from a system and transformation point of view.

Diabetes team meeting

Below are just a few* highlights from ideas and feedback that this team added to our pursuit of world class:

  • I think we support our patients really well — we embrace patients who are more challenging and offer them flexibility and compassion, whereas other organizations might turn them away or not offer the same accommodation.
  • It’s important to try to be an open accepting space where patients feel safe to share; it allows us to build that rapport and eliminate the power dynamic.
  • Too much decision-making that directly impacts departments gets done without engagement with that department.
  • If you don’t have enough staff, you don’t have enough time to go the extra mile. Not to be understaffed is the key thing. We’re just going to get busier so I think the organization really needs to keep on top of volume and staff programs accordingly. If you can talk to patients more and have more time to understand what they need, we could triage more effectively. It’s about getting more information from our patients and finding out what the exact issue is.
  • I’ve worked in two health authorities and I found it was harder to go through the system here to be on-boarded as an employee here, e.g., having to get an ID, email set-up, etc.
  • Work-life balance, especially for parents, is lacking. It’s hard to maintain balance if there is no part-time roles. If I had a part-time line, I feel like that would make a difference for me.
  • St. Paul’s Foundation has been very supportive to help us buy things that we’ve needed.
  • I find that there are a lot of opportunities for growth and education, and people are encouraged to move around and grow. I think that’s why people stay here.
  • I think it’s good that the CEO moved to St. Paul’s. She can really see what happens here that way.
  • Working in different clinics has shown me that there are many different processes for getting to the same result. One clinic does it one way and one does it another. Consistency across our processes would help.
  • We are one of the first to have an insulin pump program. First the technology came on the scene and then Health Canada started to cover it for adults. But then there was a gap because in the past you would have been trained by the company supplying the pumps. And so we recognized this gap for our patients, created a solution and were a leader in this area.
  • Before patients couldn’t go out and buy a pill – but now they can go out and buy technology. We have patients who are buying Apple watches and are coming to us to know how this can support their care. We need to stay on top of it and know how to use it. Technology will mean we will need to partner with private companies to understand how we can support our patients.
  • I think if we had more funding, our patients would be more autonomous. I think 90% of patients forget what they’re taught so if they were able to access something that could prompt or remind them, it would lead to empowerment.

* Please note: this is a high-level summary; all sentiments discussed were fully captured by the facilitator!

Diabetes team meeting

This recent session with Diabetes Health Centre staff is part of a series of facilitated engagement sessions across PHC where employees, patients, residents, family members, clinicians, researchers and volunteers are invited to weigh in on the creation of a new 7-year strategic plan (2019 – 2026) for the organization.

Diabetes team members