Award Recipients

Held annually by the HQCA and its Patient and Family Advisory Committee, the Patient Experience Awards celebrate and help spread knowledge about projects or programs that improve the patient experience in accessing and receiving healthcare services.

We are proud to announce these four initiatives as recipients of the 2022 awards.

Low-Stimulus Immunization Clinic – Calgary Zone, Public Health, Vaccination Services

This temporary clinic was created in March 2021 to support neurologically diverse clients in accessing COVID immunizations. Clients expressed the need for a quieter, calmer environment to aid in them being immunized. Clients included those with severe needle phobias, PTSD, autism, and a variety of other neurodiversities. The staff worked with the client’s family or guardian to design a care plan and gather information before the appointment. This planning helped to adapt the appointment to the individual’s needs and reduce the time needed in the clinic. The clinic was located in a central location and had good accessibility in a quieter setting. This clinic has provided over 1,000 doses of COVID vaccine.

Complex Care Hub – Calgary Zone, Rockyview General Hospital and South Health Campus

The Complex Care Hub (CCH) provides a Home Hospital care model as an alternative to traditional hospitalization for patients with complex conditions who require hospital-level care but are able to sleep at home. Hospital-based doctors and nurse navigators together oversee the care plan, coordinate services, and connect with primary care. Daily visits occur either in patients’ homes by community paramedics who consult with the doctors, or through virtual doctor appointments. The program aims to envelope patients with the medical care and services they need to heal from their acute illness and empower them to manage their chronic conditions, regain their function and independence, and reduce their risk of readmission.

Infant Preschool Assessment Service (IPAS) at the Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital, Edmonton

The IPAS team sought to improve access to early diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder, made more difficult during the COVID pandemic. In place of the traditional in-person assessments at the hospital, the IPAS team redesigned intake and assessment processes, partnered with community service providers, and created a a now internationally recognized virtual diagnostic tool. This flexible approach increased access, enhanced family involvement, and provided a more complete and realistic assessment of children by observing them in their homes. For rural and remote communities in particular, it has removed the stress and financial strain associated with travel from their communities.

Cross Cancer Institute, Edmonton

Improved integration of radiology, surgery, and pathology for early breast cancer patients is reducing the frequency of repeat surgery. Radiologists detecting tiny cancers will target the location for surgery. Previously, pathologists would determine successful removal of those targets and cancer days later, and if anything was missed, a repeat operation might become necessary. Now, pathologists in the operating room create X-ray images of the tissue being removed in real time to support the surgeon, and enable precise cancer location and removal in one step. The initiative is improving surgery outcomes for patients, and reducing the overall number of surgeries performed.

Previous award recipients

2021 HQCA Patient Experience Award recipients
Hope Hallway
Alberta Health Services’ (AHS) two adolescent mental health units at the Foothills Medical Centre collaborated with patients, family, staff, and community artists to design and create the Hope Hallway. The Hope Hallway transforms the traditional, institutionalized feel of the hospital to one that is teen-friendly, hopeful, comforting, and engaging. Content includes discussion of mental illness/hospitalization.
Medical Assistance in Dying (MAID) at AgeCare
The medical assistance in dying (MAID) program at AgeCare provides residents with compassionate end-of-life care in a peaceful and supportive space, surrounded by the people most important to them. The COVID-19 pandemic created new challenges for residents across Alberta seeking MAID. AgeCare acted quickly and worked with the MAID navigation team at Alberta Health Services to continue to accept transfers for MAID by providing a dedicated space for transfers during the pandemic, ensuring the safety and comfort of all involved. Content includes a setting for medical assistance in dying.
Reducing the Impact of Financial Strain
The Life Medical Clinic and McLeod River Primary Care Network are working together to reduce the impact of financial strain (RIFS) on their patients. They developed and implemented a screening tool that creates a safe space to have a conversation with a patient about the impact of finances on their health. The clinic worked closely with the Alberta Health Services Health Promotions team to map the local agencies who could provide appropriate supports for each patient.
Virtual Caregiver Support Sessions
The Stollery Children’s Hospital Patient and Family Centred Care team facilitated conversations with families of medically complex children to understand how they were uniquely impacted by the COVID-19 restrictions and quarantine, and created a series of virtual caregiver support sessions. This AHS initiative created a virtual community to help families cope and navigate challenges with supportive peers and providers through the pandemic. Content includes discussion of pandemic stress/isolation.
2020 HQCA Patient Experience Award recipients
Remote monitoring for patients living with cardiac implantable electrical device (CIED) – Video
The Performance Evaluation and Rhythm Follow-up Optimization through Remote Monitoring (PERFORM) team implemented remote monitoring for patients living with a cardiac implantable electrical device (CIED) more consistently across Alberta. Using remote monitoring, CIEDs can be connected at any time, wherever a cellular or WiFi network exists. This allows patients to be evaluated in their home to a similar extent as in a specialty face to face clinic visit, increasing access to appropriate and acceptable care in the community and without subjecting patients to excessive infectious risks as in the current pandemic.
Virtual Opioid Dependency Program (VODP) – Video
The Virtual Opioid Dependency Program (VODP) uses a completely virtual clinic model to connect a doctor-led, multidisciplinary team with clients referred for opioid agonist therapy (OAT; e.g., methadone or buprenorphine/naloxone). Assessment, treatment, and support are provided via videoconference, telephone, and texting, and are delivered in conjunction with a pharmacist in the local area for OAT medication dispensing. If you are in Alberta and need support for yourself or a loved one, you can call the VODP team at 1-844-383-7688.
Maskwacis Elders Mentoring Program – Video
The Wetaskiwin Primary Care Network (PCN) Prenatal Program, in collaboration with the University of Alberta and the Cree communities of Maskwacis, established the Elders Mentoring Program. Through the program, several Elders and grandmothers from Maskwacis work alongside staff to provide additional, culturally appropriate supports to Indigenous pregnant women and their partners in their prenatal clinic.
Provincial Intensive Care Unit (ICU) Delirium Initiative – Video
*Given the circumstances surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic and unique pressures facing our provincial ICU teams, the Provincial ICU Delirium Initiative team’s video is currently on hold. We look forward to sharing this team’s story with you when we can!* In partnership with Alberta’s critical care community, the Critical Care Strategic Clinical Network (CCSCN) led and facilitated the highly collaborative Provincial Intensive Care Unit (ICU) Delirium Initiative. This initiative team engaged patient and family advisors, operational leaders, and front-line healthcare professionals across Alberta Health Services to design, adapt, and implement leading practices for the prevention and management of ICU-associated delirium into the Alberta context. These efforts resulted in a standardized provincial approach to this aspect of care in both adult and pediatric critical care settings.
2019 HQCA Patient Experience Award recipients
Summary of 2019 Award Recipients
Read about the four initiatives that received a 2019 Patient Experience Award.
NowICU Project, Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), Misericordia Community Hospital – Video
Rapid Access, Patient Focused Biopsy Clinic; Head and Neck Surgery, Pathology; University of Alberta Hospital – Video
Edmonton Prostate Interdisciplinary Cancer Clinic (EPICC), Northern Alberta Urology Centre – Video
Transitional Pain Service, South Health Campus – Video
2018 HQCA Patient Experience Award recipients
Summary of 2018 Award Recipients
Read about the four initiatives that received a 2018 Patient Experience Award.
Webcast from our 2018 Awards program
2017 HQCA Patient Experience Award recipients
Summary of 2017 Award Recipients
Read about the four initiatives that received a 2017 Patient Experience Award.
Webcast from our 2017 Awards program
2016 HQCA Patient Experience Award recipients
Summary of 2016 Award Recipients
Read about the four initiatives that received a 2016 Patient Experience Award.
Webcast from our 2016 Awards program