Summer season This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Please note that the newsletter’s publication will be interrupted for the summer. We will resume publication on August 25, 2015. Until then, you may consult our Web site at: http://www.msss.gouv.qc.ca/ministere/observatoiresss/index.php?accueil-en This hyperlink will open in a new window.

Australia - Hospitals spending tops $55 billion a year This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Spending by Australia’s hospitals topped $55 billion in 2014, according to a report by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW). It shows that $44 billion was spent by the country’s 747 public hospitals, and $11 billion by 612 private hospitals. Hospital expenditures increased by 4.4% over 2013 levels.

Canada - Supply of nurses in Canada declines for first time in 2 decades This hyperlink will open in a new window.
For the first time in 2 decades, more regulated nurses left their profession than entered it, according to a recent report from the Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI). Fewer of these professionals — which include registered nurses (RNs), licensed practical nurses (LPNs) and registered psychiatric nurses (RPNs) — applied for registration, while more chose not to renew their registration due to factors such as retirement, a new career path or a move outside Canada.

Europe - Special report on Healthy Cities in Europe launched This hyperlink will open in a new window.
The Regional Office for Europe of the WHO published this special supplement to look at intersectoral governance for health and equity in European cities. It presents a collection of critical analyses and reflections that build on a five-year evaluation process incorporating data from 99 cities across the WHO European Region.

Norway - Municipal health care service, 2014 This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Norway spent 15 billion krone ($2.35 billion Cdn) on municipal healthcare services in 2014, up 8% from 2013. As in previous years, the largest share of spending is related to diagnostics, treatment and rehabilitation. Use of municipal public health centres continues to rise.

Switzerland - Federal Council looks at way to improve the status of patients This hyperlink will open in a new window.
According to the Swiss Federal Council, patients should have more of a voice in health policy development. The Council took note of the report on patient rights and patient engagement in Switzerland, which highlights potential improvements for the benefit of all stakeholders, The Council instructed the Federal Department of the Interior to examine some potential solutions in greater depth, including greater transparency and clarity of the legal situation, and increased patient involvement in policy processes.

International - Slow growth in health spending but Europe lags behind This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Many European countries saw further reductions in health spending in 2013, according to OECD Health Statistics 2015. Health spending continued to shrink in Greece, Italy and Portugal in 2013. Most countries in the European Union reported real per capita health spending below the levels of 2009. Outside of Europe, health spending has been growing at around 2.5% per year since 2010.

Upcoming Events

Canada - Hospital 2015
The McGill Institute for Health and Social Policy (IHSP) and the new Centre for Interdisciplinary Research on Montreal (CIRM) are holding this conference on October 1 and 2, 2015, in Montreal, to explore the ‘hospital’ from multiple academic perspectives – including historical, architectural, socio-cultural, and urban planning. The conference was inspired by Montreal's two new super-hospitals.

UK - Integrated care summit 2015
Taking place on October 13, 2015, in London, this integrated care summit provides an opportunity for individuals, teams, organisations, and local health and care systems to come together to explore how to deliver joined-up care for patients. Organized by The King's Fund, the program builds on their report "Population health systems" and showcases international best practices in integrated care.

Reports and Issue Portfolios

Belgium – Implementation of Hospital at Home: Orientations for Belgium This hyperlink will open in a new window.
This scientific report from KCE analyses the effectiveness and the safety of different international models of hospital at home (HAH). It explores practical considerations regarding the coordination of the care plan, patient and family empowerment, as well as workforce, financing, information technology and other supports required to implement HAH in Belgium.

Canada - Consolidating mental health services in Québec: the 2005-2010 Mental Health Action Plan This hyperlink will open in a new window.
The study published by the Health Reform Observer examines results of Québec's 2005-2010 Mental Health Action Plan, which aimed to consolidate medical services and community group services under a local needs-based approach. The author concludes that the plan did not achieve the desired results and required multiple adjustments.

Europe - Practice conditions of family physicians in 5 European countries This hyperlink will open in a new window.
In response to the passage, over the last several years, of regulations intended to organize the supply of general practitioners in France, the Observatoire national de la démographie des professions de santé undertook this study on the practice conditions of family doctors in France. The study is accompanied by a publication of case studies from different countries: Germany, Belgium, Spain, Netherlands and United Kingdom.

Europe - Recruitment and Retention of the Health Workforce in Europe This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Funded by the European Union (EU), this study of health workforce recruitment and retention in Europe includes a literature review, eight case studies, and recommendations for policy makers, managers and health professionals. The authors identify innovative solutions to the challenges of recruiting and retaining health staff.

France - Telemedicine: Report from the working group on e-health industrial strategy This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Published by the Ministère des Affaires sociales, de la Santé et des Droits des femmes in France, the working group's report examines the emergence of an industrial strategy around e-health that supports of public health policy. The focus is on the development of non-financial measures to remove obstacles to the deployment of telemedicine in France and develop industrial capacity, R & D and exports in this field.

UK - Creating a better care system. Setting out key considerations for a reformed, sustainable Health, Wellbeing and Care system of the future This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Published by Britain’s Local Government Association (LGA), this strategy document develops a framework for improving the UK health and social care system, defines systematic barriers to change, and describes key choices required for meaningful reform. The document calls for an integrated but devolved system supported by local infrastructure, pooled funding, and national policy mechanisms.

UK - Focus on: international comparisons of healthcare quality - what can the UK learn? This hyperlink will open in a new window.
This study compares British healthcare quality in four sectors (primary care, acute care, cancer care and mental health) with equivalent care in 12 countries: Australia, Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Spain, Sweden and the US. Analysis reveals that the UK ranks last or second last on 16 of 27 quality indicators used in the study.

USA - Transforming Health Care Scheduling and Access: Getting to Now This hyperlink will open in a new window.
According to this report, long waits for treatment typify the way most health systems have evolved to accommodate doctors and administrators. The report says that utilizing systems engineering, new management approaches and patient engagement can enable health systems to reduce wait times without additional personnel or investment. Ways to promote efficient physician scheduling are emphasized.

International - High performing hospitals: a qualitative systematic review of associated factors and practical strategies for improvement This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Conducted by Australian and UK academics, this systematic review examines research methods used to identify high performing hospitals; the factors associated with high performance; and practical strategies for improvement. Assessment of 19 studies revealed four factors associated with high performing hospitals: positive organizational culture, effective leadership, expertise-driven practice, and interdisciplinary teamwork. Fifty-six practical improvement strategies are catalogued.