Headlines

Australia - Australia's Long Term National Health Plan This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Australia has announced a 10-year plan that will address key areas of mental health, primary care, hospitals, preventive health and medical research. Initial investment in the new plan will total $295 billion US and improve public access to medicines through a pharmaceutical benefits scheme.

Australia - Public hospital spending is growing more quickly than increases in beds and staff This hyperlink will open in a new window.
This report from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) shows that public hospital spending increased by 3.3% in 2018, while numbers of beds rose 1.3% and staff numbers increased by 1.1%. Growth in private hospital beds was higher than in public hospitals, averaging 3.6% per year between 2012-13 and 2016-17.

Canada - Canadians eager for health care to catch up to the online world This hyperlink will open in a new window.
According to a recent Canadian Medical Association (CMA) report, increasing numbers of Canadians believe that connecting data, technology and innovation will greatly improve the healthcare system. The CMA explores Canadians' perspectives on provincial healthcare systems and advances in technology such as artificial intelligence (AI), virtual care, and patient platforms.

New Zealand - New study on avoidable hospitalisations in New Zealand children This hyperlink will open in a new window.
A Ministry of Health study has shown that fluoridated drinking water, higher vaccination rates and enrolling kids with pediatricians can help keep many children out of hospital. The study says 30% of all hospital admissions for children under five in New Zealand could be avoided by improving access to quality housing, primary care, and fluoridated water. Oral health is among the four leading causes of hospitalization in children under age 12.

UK - Health Secretary announces £250 million investment in artificial intelligence This hyperlink will open in a new window.
The UK government has announced a £250 million investment ($403 million Cdn) in artificial intelligence for the country’s National Health Service (NHS). The NHS will develop a new National Artificial Intelligence Lab (NAIL) that will use artificial intelligence (AI) to improve health records, disease screening, predictive models, administrative tasks and staff skill sets.

Upcoming Events

Canada - Infoway Partnership Conference This hyperlink will open in a new window.
The 2019 conference takes place on November 12 and 13, in Ottawa. It will explore developments and prospects for safer medication practices, empowering Canadians with access to their health information and to digital health services, as well as topics such as achieving clinical interoperability, addressing privacy concerns, and leading change management.

Canada - XXII World Congress on Safety & Health at Work This hyperlink will open in a new window.
This international conference will be hosted by the Institute for Work and Health and the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety and takes place in Toronto from October 4 to 7, 2020. Main program areas will include: innovations in addressing longstanding safety and health challenges; implications of the changing world of work; and advancing a culture of prevention.

Reports and Issue Portfolios

Canada - A framework for value-creating learning health systems This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Learning health systems (LHSs) can allow value-based healthcare to provide better care at lower cost. This paper by Québec academics presents a conceptual framework supporting the Canadian implementation of value-creating LHSs. It describes core LHS values, pillars, processes and outcomes. It focuses on how pillars (infrastructure and resources) support the execution, routinization and acceleration of learning cycles, which are the fundamental processes of LHSs.

Europe - Strengthening health systems through nursing: Evidence from 14  European countries This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Part one of a two-volume study of how nurses strengthen health systems, this book explores the structures and functions of nursing workforces in 14 European countries. It examines roles, duties, regulation, training and workforce planning, while noting differences in organizational cultures, scope of practice, and ratios to physicians and populations. A second volume published in late 2019 will provide thematic analysis of nursing policy issues.

Europe - Digital health systems This hyperlink will open in a new window.
This issue of Eurohealth magazine addresses key issues surrounding the digitalization of health systems in Europe. Along with a guest editorial on governance and leadership, the issue contains 10 articles on digital health subjects as varied as next generation structures, the use of health data amid privacy concerns, effective artificial intelligence policy, Estonian digital e-prescriptions and the development of digital health in Denmark.

UK - How doctors in senior leadership roles establish and maintain a positive patient-centred culture This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Conducted for Britain’s General Medical Council (GMC), this research investigates how physicians in senior leadership roles approach the goal of building and sustaining positive workplace cultures where patients experience safe, high quality care. Based on interviews with 27 senior medical leaders around the UK, the research clarifies concepts around positive organizational culture, explores facilitators and barriers, and identifies leadership criteria for effective implementation.

USA - Investing in Primary Care: A State-Level Analysis This hyperlink will open in a new window.
In this evidence report, the Patient-Centered Primary Care Collaborative (PCPCC) examines primary care spending patterns (including spending across payer type) in 10 US states and considers the implications of these results for select patient outcomes. The authors suggest that state policymakers currently have some momentum to shift delivery systems back to their primary care foundations in order to address diverse patient needs.

International - High-Performance Health Financing for Universal Health Coverage (Vol. 2): Driving Sustainable, Inclusive Growth in the 21st Century This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Most developing countries will fail targets for universal health coverage (UHC) unless they strengthen health financing, according to this World Bank report. High-performance health financing is an investment that benefits economies by reducing poverty and inequity, building human capital, improving efficiency, increasing labour markets and promoting health security.

International - Helping patients help themselves: A systematic review of self-management support strategies in primary health care practice This hyperlink will open in a new window.
This Australian review synthesizes 58 studies of patient self-management support (SMS) strategies in primary care practice. The studies assessed the effectiveness of individualized interventions on patients with any condition in primary care compared to usual standard of care. Findings showed that positive outcomes for effective SMS strategies included improvements in clinical indicators, patient quality of life, patient self-efficacy (confidence to self-manage), and disease knowledge.

International - Towards a universal model of family centered care: a scoping review This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Examining 55 previous studies (including 40 studies of pediatric patients), this scoping review explores existing models of family-centered care to identify its main components. These include: collaboration between family members and providers, consideration of family contexts, policies and procedures, and patient, family, and health care professional education. Some of these aspects were universal, while others were illness specific. Few studies evaluated a model’s impact on patient, family, or health system outcomes.

International - Measurement and rural primary health care: a scoping review This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Rural areas present challenges for primary healthcare delivery, especially as performance measurement systems do not often acknowledge the distinctive challenges of rural primary care. This scoping review of 26 studies explores important features of rural primary care, finding major differences in the ways patients access care, as well as in the services they receive. The authors urge consideration of these factors in the design of future performance measurement systems.