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Joanna Hickey



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    OS23 - Looking Through the Data Lens (ID 38)

    • Event: e-Health 2019 Virtual Meeting
    • Type: Oral Session
    • Track: Executive
    • Presentations: 1
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      OS23.04 - Managed Service Model: Accessing Healthcare Through a Different Lens (ID 459)

      Joanna Hickey, Ontario Telemedicine Network; Toronto/CA

      • Abstract
      • Slides

      Purpose/Objectives:
      The Managed Service Model (MSM) project provides access to timely and culturally safe health care services to First Nations communities throughout Ontario. Keewaytinook Okimakanak eHealth Telemedicine Services (KOeTS) and Ontario Telemedicine Network (OTN) invited remote First Nations communities across Ontario to participate in the MSM project. The project is facilitated using OTNinvite, a videoconferencing feature that allows individuals external to OTN?s network, to participate in real-time video visits.


      Methodology/Approach:
      OTN and KOeTS piloted a new model for First Nations communities with a simpler and more convenient alternative to purchasing a room-based videoconferencing system. First Nations on-reserve communities with adequate internet connectivity applied to receive a secure desktop computer with videoconferencing devices (high definition web camera and an echo cancelling speakerphone) so that they could participate in video consults. Consults are enabled through a private and secure web link. In March 2017, the participating First Nations communities attended an engagement session in Kenora where they received equipment and process training. In all, 40 OTNinvite systems were distributed to the participating communities. Community engagement is continuously provided by a Regional Telemedicine Navigator (RTN), located in Balmertown. The RTN identifies and schedules healthcare providers and services to meet the needs of the community members. Funding for this project is provided through Ontario?s First Nations Health Action Plan. While the project was designed to facilitate the connection between patients and providers using OTNinvite, the feature was also leveraged as a teaching device to familiarize providers with the project. This ensured that providers and communities were comfortable with the technology and processes prior to patient engagement.


      Finding/Results:
      Communities within the project identified a demand for healthcare in areas such as mental health, oncology, and diabetes. Mental health presents the area of most potential to expand utilization within the community health centres. Awareness and partnership development with mental health partners is ongoing. Based on the identified needs, engagement sessions were held with Misaway (diabetes management centre), Waypoint Centre, SickKids Telepsychiatry program, as well as St. Michael?s Hospital and Thunder Bay Regional oncology departments. To date, the project has discovered: -There exists a knowledge gap among providers who are unfamiliar with OTNinvite and accustomed to traditional room-based telemedicine services. -Despite the connectivity available throughout the province, First Nations communities are still challenged with bandwidth issues. -The communities selected for the MSM project had no prior experience with telemedicine and so require a higher level of support.


      Conclusion/Implications/Recommendations:
      -The RTN continues to mitigate the provider knowledge gap through ongoing outreach and working with Telemedicine Coordinators (TMC). To keep their skills sharp, TMCs are encouraged to participate in OTNinvite test calls. -Where bandwidth issues are not resolvable, systems will be re-allocated to other communities. -The frequency of contact and engagement with these communities will be increased to better support their participation in the project. By encouraging health care providers and patients to use MSM, First Nations communities have access to a low-cost alternative to purchasing a video clinical system which requires OTN membership, management, and staffing resources.


      140 Character Summary:
      The KOeTS and OTN lead MSM project provides timely access to culturally safe health care for harder-to-reach Ontario First Nations communities using OTNinvite.

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