North York General Hospital (NYGH) was one of the campaign’s earliest adopters after the launch in 2014. Through the leadership of the CEO and the Vice President of Medical and Academic Affairs, NYGH’s approach centred on encouraging staff to be innovative and bring ideas forward on what Choosing Wisely Canada recommendations the hospital should prioritize. By engaging patients and supporting physician leadership, NYGH was able to use their advanced electronic health record with evidence-based order sets to reduce unnecessary test and treatments, and instill a culture of ‘Choosing Wisely’ when providing health care services.
NYGH subsequently led a two-year ARTIC project supported by the Council of Academic Hospitals of Ontario (CAHO) and Health Quality Ontario (HQO), which spread the approach to five nearby hospitals, members of the Joint Centres for Transformative Innovation (Markham Stouffville Hospital, Michael Garron Hospital, North York General Hospital, St. Joseph’s Health Centre, and Southlake Regional Health Centre) and their six associated Family Health Teams (Health for All, Markham, North York, St. Joseph’s Urban, South East Toronto, Southlake Academic).
NYGH attributes a lot of its success to having strong clinical and administrative leadership support. Some examples of how NYGH engaged and utilized these leaders are:
- Vice President focused on frequent and early communication with Medical Advisory Committee throughout the journey
- Each Medical Chief was asked to send out an email to physicians regarding the campaign, and each department was asked to identify their ‘Top 5 Tests’ that they thought could be reduced or eliminated
- Medical Directors helped drive deliverables, mitigate risks, and track milestones