Canada - B.C. government’s primary health-care strategy focuses on faster, team-based care This hyperlink will open in a new window.
British Columbia’s government is launching a strategy to improve access to primary health care. New primary care networks will be established over the next two years, along with urban primary care centres and community health centres. Funding will be provided for general practitioners moving into the new team-based care model.

Canada - Canadian Longitudinal Study on Aging releases first report on health and aging in Canada This hyperlink will open in a new window.
The Canadian Longitudinal Study on Aging (CLSA) has released preliminary analysis of data collected from 50,000 Canadians aged 45 to 85. It shows that women are most likely to experience social isolation, but that 95% of older Canadians rate their mental health as very good. Over 44% of respondents provide some level of care to others.

Ireland - Report Shows Digital Technology Could Play Important Role In Mental Healthcare In Ireland This hyperlink will open in a new window.
A report by Ireland’s national coalition on mental health has found that digital technology can play an important role. The report provides an overview of eMental Health applications designed for people with common mental health conditions such as anxiety and depression, as well as applications for people with severe persistent conditions.

UK - New system launched to help measure and prevent medication errors This hyperlink will open in a new window.
The National Health Service (NHS) has launched a system to track the contribution of medication errors to hospital admissions. The system will use a series of indicators that link prescribing data from primary care to hospital admissions. The first indicators introduced will focus on the role of prescription errors in admissions for gastrointestinal bleeding.

USA - 2018 Scorecard on State Health System Performance This hyperlink will open in a new window.
The US states of Hawaii, Massachusetts and Minnesota are this year’s top-ranked performers in the 2018 Scorecard on State Health System Performance. The scorecard assesses 40 measures of access to health care, quality of care, health outcomes, and income-based disparities. The scorecard also reveals that 28 states are losing ground on measures related to life expectancy.

Upcoming Events

Canada - Canadian Health Workforce Conference
This is the third conference organized by the Canadian Health Human Resources Network. It provides a forum for discussion around how to optimize health system human resources and ensure that they are fit for purpose. Presenters from across the country and internationally will look at optimizing skills mix, workforce retirement, social accountability and particular challenges of an aging population, community and home care, and mental health. The conference takes place in Gatineau on October 4 and 5, 2018.

Canada - Family Medicine Forum
The College of Family Physicians of Canada is holding its forum from November 14 to 17, 2018, in Toronto. It offers a wide range of continuing professional development sessions and plenaries on the issues facing family medicine. The program will be available soon.

Reports and Issue Portfolios

Canada - Modernizing Canada’s Healthcare System through the Virtualization of Services This hyperlink will open in a new window.
In Canada, investments in digital health currently amount to several billion dollars. This article suggests using the Quadruple Aim (QA) framework devised by the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) to further modernize care delivery using virtual services. The QA framework focuses on improved population health, patient and provider satisfaction, and reduced costs. The article proposes 10 strategies to improve virtual services in Canadian health care.

Europe - Organization and financing of public health services in Europe: country reports (2018) This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Describing the public health services of nine European countries, this study explores organization and financing along with training and workforce concerns. Covering England, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Slovenia, Sweden, Poland and Moldova, the study illustrates two different approaches to public health services: integration with curative health services (as in Slovenia or Sweden), or organization and provision through a separate parallel structure (Moldova and Poland).

Spain - Implementation of Home Hospitalization and Early Discharge as an Integrated Care Service: A Ten Years Pragmatic Assessment This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Published in the International Journal of Integrated Care, this study presents a 10-year follow-up of the institution of an early discharge and homecare program for chronic care patients as part of hospital-outreach integrated care services. Conducted in Barcelona, the study finds that the program achieved lower hospital readmission and mortality rates over the decade, and reduced hospital stays by an average of 6 days per patient. The program also cost less than hospitalization.

UK - Securing the future: funding health and social care to the 2030s This hyperlink will open in a new window.
According to this article, UK healthcare funding will need to increase by at least 3.9% annually over the next decade to meet the needs of the country’s aging population. Although government has clamped down on health spending through cuts and privatization, the article says tax increases will be necessary to secure the future of health and social care into the 2030s.

UK - Transforming Integration through General Practice: Learning from a UK Primary Care Improvement Programme This hyperlink will open in a new window.
This article presents learning from a UK-based improvement program that moves hospital diagnostic and treatment services into the community. It focuses on program components such as per capita funding mechanisms, monthly learning sessions between advanced programs, and formative evaluations. The program demonstrates that transformation of primary care requires careful redesign, changes in clinician and provider paradigms, and deployment of relevant infrastructure improvement methodologies.

UK - Sharing to improve: four case studies of data sharing in general practice This hyperlink will open in a new window.
This briefing describes data-sharing approaches that enable general practitioners to collaborate in quality improvement efforts. It highlights case studies from a range of expanded or networked organizations, and demonstrates how data sharing can drive improvements in general practice.

UK - A fork in the road: next steps for social care funding reform This hyperlink will open in a new window.
This paper pulls together financial modelling and policy analysis to identify problems with adult social care and outline options for reform. It concludes that reform will be expensive, but says the UK is now at a fork in the road, heading either to an improved means-tested system, or to one that is free at the point of use for those who need it, like the healthcare system.

USA - Nurse Practitioner–Physician Comanagement: A Theoretical Model to Alleviate Primary Care Strain This hyperlink will open in a new window.
American nurse practitioners (NPs) are increasingly managing patient care as clinicians. This paper surveys 156 prior studies to develop a new model of clinical co-management between NPs and physicians. The model has three elements: effective communication, mutual respect, and clinical alignment of care. The paper also describes the legal and organizational barriers that continue to inhibit NP practice in the US.

International - Revisiting out-of-pocket requirements: trends in spending, financial access barriers, and policy in ten high-income countries This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Countries rely on out-of-pocket (OOP) health spending to different degrees and also employ varying techniques. The article examines OOP spending in 10 high-income countries (Australia, Canada, France, Germany, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, the UK, and the US), and analyzes its relationship to access to healthcare services. The study finds a great deal of variation in per capita OOP spending.