The Women’s College Hospital Institute for Health System Solutions and Virtual Care (WIHV) is a living laboratory for health system solutions in Ontario and beyond.
Whether it’s evaluating provincial digital health programs, nudging primary care providers across the province to improve prescribing, or engaging structurally marginalized groups to design the future of community care, WIHV is responding to today’s most pressing health issues through research insights and solutions.
Working with stakeholders inside the health system and innovators from other sectors, WIHV identifies and evaluates ground-breaking approaches that address gaps in our healthcare system. Our work supports solutions that make care more convenient, more effective, and less costly to deliver.
For many organizations operating outside of the healthcare system, it can seem like not having the right information can hold up the design or implementation of a new digital health tool or model of care that could be beneficial to providers and/or patients.
At the same time, health system leaders may not have the time to invest in evaluating which tools to use, how best to implement them and assess their impact rigorously.
With each project we take on, we assess the extent to which models of care align with the Quintuple Aim framework:
- Improving the patient experience of care (including quality and satisfaction);
- Improving provider experience;
- Improving the health of populations;
- Reducing or holding the per capita cost of healthcare constant;
- Enhancing equity, ensuring benefit for the most disadvantaged groups.
We also focus on solutions at the systemic level, assessing the sustainability of innovations and their capacity to scale up within a region or disseminate across different jurisdictions.
The goal of WIHV is to provide methodological and quality improvement expertise to support rigorous evaluations of feedback on the implementation, quality, and impact of virtual-based solutions for ambulatory healthcare to enable rapid continuous improvements and guide thoughtful leadership in healthcare delivery. The evaluations conducted by WIHV aim to answer questions around how implementation characteristics can affect the adoption of virtual care technologies, how virtual care technologies impact the 6 domains of quality as defined by the National Academies of Medicine, and how virtual care solutions can support achievement of the Quintuple Aim.
Women’s Virtual programs evaluated by WIHV include:
- The SCOPE integrated primary care program
- COVID Care@Home remote monitoring program
- Video visits for ambulatory care during the COVID-19 pandemic
- Patient and Provider Experiences With Virtual Care in a Large, Ambulatory Care Hospital in Ontario, Canada During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Observational Study
- Quality of virtual care for ambulatory care sensitive conditions: Patient and provider experiences
- Operationalizing and Evaluating Synchronous Virtual Group Health Interventions: Wide-Scale Implementation at a Tertiary Care Academic Hospital
- The LTC+ virtual consult program for long-term care facilities
WIHV houses the Centre for Digital Health Evaluation, leveraging internal expertise and external partnerships to assess the applicability of solutions through health services research, translational research, engineering, sociology, program evaluations, market readiness, and healthcare implementation.
A breakdown of the virtual care portfolio follows:
Centre for Digital Health Evaluation (CDHE)
Our team offers high-quality large-scale evaluations of digital health technologies at various stages of maturity, harnessing a wide range of expertise and conducting research at the pace of policy in ways that can inform decisions made by the Ministry of Health, Ontario Health and other stakeholders.
Market Entry Consulting
In partnership with the National Research Council’s Industrial Research Assistant Program (NRC-IRAP), our team offers market entry consulting services at no cost to eligible small- and medium-sized Canadian enterprises.
Our services are provided by a panel of experts from across the nation, with expertise in clinical practice, policy, technology, informatics, innovation, engineering, procurement, and/or commercialization.
Interested? Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for additional details.
Canadian Network for Digital Health Evaluation (CNDHE)
The CNDHE is a pan-Canadian initiative to build capacity to evaluate new and existing digital health tools and related policy supports. The network aims to build a national infrastructure and common strategy to create and strengthen evaluation in digital health through the development of a pan-Canadian digital health evaluation framework, nation-wide digital health evaluations, and a network of academics, policy-makers, evaluation experts, patient groups, providers, and learners. Our vision is to have a nation-wide strategy for digital health evaluation that facilitates learning across regions and incorporates the Quintuple Aims focusing on patient experience, provider experience, equity, cost efficiency and population level benefits.
The Access + Policy (A+P) Team uses qualitative and program evaluation approaches to generate insights related to health equity, access to care, innovation and policy with a specific focus on equitable digital health, integrated care and community care. The A+P team collaborates with a range of partners including community organizations, municipal and provincial governments, pan-Canadian agencies, and other researchers.
- Futures of Health Equity in Community Care: A Strategic Foresight Project for Equity-Promoting Community Care in Toronto
- Optimizing the use of Virtual Primary Care: Equity, Policies and Workflows (Project 1: Equitable Virtualization of Primary Care)
- Virtual Care in the COVID-19 Era (Stream 2: Equity)
- Commentary: Community Knowledge for Equity in Healthcare
- Digital Health Technologies for More Equitable Health Systems: A Discussion Paper
- Innovative Strategies for Inter-sectorial Collaboration between Mental Health, Housing, and Health Care
Clinical Considerations when Applying Machine Learning to Decision-Support Tasks Versus Automation by Dr. Trevor Jamieson and Avi Goldfarb
Collateral Damage: The Unintended Consequences of Misguided Hospital Funding Reform by Dr. Noah Ivers, Karen S. Palmer & Dr. David Wasserstein
Strategies for Health Systems to Engage the IT-Enabled Consumer by Dr Onil Bhattacharyya, Lovisa Gustafsson & Dr. Eric Schneider
Beyond “implementation:” digital health innovation and service design by Jay Shaw, Dr. Payal Agarwal, Dr. Daniel Cornejo Palma, Vess Stamenova, Dr. Trevor Jamieson, Rebecca Yang, Dr. Sacha Bhatia & Dr. Onil Bhattacharyya
Drawing lessons from Canada’s experience with single-payer health insurance by Dr. Noah Ivers, Steini Brown & Allan Detsky
Virtual Healthcare Revolution Here to Stay by Dr. Sacha Bhatia, Trevor Jamieson, James Shaw, Carole Piovesan, Leah Kelley, & Will Falk
Community Knowledge for Equity in Healthcare by James Shaw, Philina Sky and Shivani Chandra