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UK - Open innovation in health. A guide to transforming healthcare through collaboration

Published by Nesta, this guide explores international examples of open innovation in the field of health and examines the ways that companies, governments, researchers and citizens are collaborating to improve the innovation process. The guide analyzes 18 types of open innovation initiative, illustrated with examples from around the world, and identifies open innovation approaches across the innovation cycle.

USA - The convergence of health care trends. Innovation strategies for emerging opportunities

Powerful trends in the US healthcare market are creating opportunities for innovation in community care, preventive care, personalized care and chronic care. This article by consultants at Deloitte says healthcare organizations should capitalize on these opportunities, and provides a model called ‘Ten Innovation Types,’ which details the building blocks of innovation that organizations should consider.

UK - Meridian Health Innovation Exchange

The Meridian web platform is a pioneering health innovation exchange that allows academics, professionals, and managers to share ideas and innovations that might improve healthcare in England's West Midlands region. Participants can comment, supply feedback, suggest improvements and vote for the adoption of featured innovations by the regional health authority.

UK - Innovation Health and Wealth: accelerating adoption and diffusion in the NHS

This report published by the U.K.’s National Health Service (NHS) sets out a delivery agenda for spreading innovation throughout the NHS. It recognizes that innovation has a vital role to play in improving outcomes for patients and delivering value for money. It also recognizes that adoption has been slow and that innovation must be nurtured through coordinated planning.

UK - Evaluating the role and contribution of innovation to health and wealth in the UK: A review of Innovation, Health and Wealth: Phase 1 Final Report

This report represents the first phase of a three-year evaluation of the UK Department of Health's Innovation, Health and Wealth (IHW) strategy to introduce a more strategic approach to the spread of innovation across Britain’s National Health Service (NHS). Relying on document reviews, informant interviews and stakeholder surveys, the evaluation shows broad support for the IHW strategy.

Canada - Supporting Research and Innovation in Health Technology Sector. Ontario Creates New Council to Study Sector Innovation

This council, established by the Ministry of Research and Innovation, will help to enhance the province's world renowned health technology sector by developing recommendations to identify opportunities for Ontario's small- and medium-sized businesses, adapt best practices of other jurisdictions, and expand the adoption of new technologies across health care settings.

UK - Improved circulation: unleashing innovation across the NHS

Unprecedented demand has left Britain’s National Health Service (NHS) with a funding gap of billions of pounds. This paper argues that widely applied healthcare innovation would help the NHS improve its finances by boosting productivity gains. The paper identifies barriers and accelerators to innovation within the NHS and proposes incentives.

USA - Making Open Innovation Ecosystems Work: Case Studies in Healthcare

This report addresses the use of ‘open innovation’ approaches in health care, especially the adoption of external ideas to direct internal innovation to consumers. The approach is studied using two case studies analyzing technological ecosystems built around the introduction of new electronic health record software. The authors identify best practices, including transparency and the minimization of bureaucracy.

Canada - Unleashing Innovation: Excellent Healthcare for Canada Report of the Advisory Panel on Healthcare Innovation

This panel, chaired by Dr. David Naylor for Health Canada, undertook wide-ranging consultations and commissioned research in order to identify the five most promising areas for innovation in Canadian healthcare to be acted upon by the federal government. Top among them is patient engagement and empowerment, with system integration, technological transformation, better procurement and regulation also found to be key to breaking the gridlock. The report examines how federal institutions can be restructured to support the spread of innovative practices.

Norway - Innovation in hospitals: piloting a tool for investigating contributions of hospital employees to innovation

This paper addresses the question of how hospital employees contribute to the generation of innovations and to what extent hospitals function as a conducive environment for innovative work. A preliminary analysis indicates that there are different modes of innovative work in hospitals, as suggested by some of the literature, and that different kinds of employees are involved in distinct sets of activities.

Strengthening primary and chronic care: state innovations to transform and link small practices

Brief analytical summaries or syntheses #14 Strengthening primary and chronic care state innovations to transform and link small practices Summary This report examines the roles states are playing to reorganize the delivery of primary and chronic care to produce more efficient and effective care. Through short case studies developed via interviews with state officials and physicians in Colorado, Michigan, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, and Vermont, the authors highlight several state-based initiatives that seek to create high-performing health systems by targeting local and regional strengths. Background Although most of the debate preceding the passage of the Affordable Care Act in March 2010 was focused on improving access to care, it is widely agreed that without equal attention to reforms that address cost and quality, the United States is destined to continue its path of uncontrolled, spiralling costs and poor overall performance. The issues are complex, and there is no silver bullet…

International - Taking care of innovation. The HRM innovation process in healthcare organizations

Employees are of crucial importance for the performance of healthcare organizations. This dissertation examines innovations in human resources management strategies in the health sector. It looks at the adoption, implementation and spread of innovations in both work design and employment practices.

UK - Towards affordable healthcare: Why effective innovation is key

New report from independent think tank finds just seven health innovations could save the NHS £18.5 billion, and the social care sector £6.3 billion between 2015 – 2030. The report concludes that the UK is often not doing enough with the tools at its disposal to implement such innovations.

Australia - New website showcases innovation in Australia’s health workforce

Health Workforce Innovation in Australia is a new website that showcases organisations that are driving workforce reform across the Australian health sector. The site contains hundreds of examples of innovation in five categories: workforce reform, capacity and skills, leadership, workforce planning and policy, funding and regulation. The website is part of the Innovation and Reform Strategic Framework for Action 2011-2015.

Canada - Canadians seeking more federal innovation to improve health care system

A survey on health innovation conducted for the Canadian Medical Association (CMA) shows that provincial governments are viewed as more effective drivers of innovation than the federal government. While 68% of Canadians feel the provinces are doing the most to support innovative health care, a majority of respondents also wanted more federal action.

International - Innovations in Health Care System Reform in OECD Countries

The Innovation Journal published this special issue on innovations in healthcare system reform within the 34 countries of the OECD. The special issue features articles on innovative healthcare reform in Canada, Greece, Finland, the UK and Germany, along with an essay on new policy directions in Saskatchewan.

Lunch hour conferences 2016

By Michel Perreault, psychologist-researcher, Douglas Mental Health University Institute, associate professor, Psychiatry Department, Université McGill Hélène Provencher, professor, Nursing Faculty, Université Laval, researcher, Groupe de recherche sur l'Inclusion sociale, l'Organisation des services et l'Évaluation en santé mentale (GRIOSE-SM), CSSS de la Vieille-Capitale This conference will address the added value question of the intervention focusing on the contribution of peer helpers in care and services network, particularly in the area of mental health. The major findings from two research projects supported by the MSSS will be presented, one about the peer helpers intervention to facilitate access to clinical treatment for people with anxiety disorders with the support group Phobies-Zéro and the other one addressing the peer helpers integration in teams of support in the community for people with severe mental disorders proposed by the “Peer Helpers Network Program” associated with the Association québécoise pour la réadaptation psychosociale. Peer helpers accompany researchers…

Canada - Bilateral Health Agreements between the Federal and Provincial/Territorial Governments in Canada

According to this study, bilateral health transfer agreements between Ottawa and the provinces could increase innovation and enhance performance in Canada’s health system. Released by the Institute for Research on Public Policy (IRPP), the study notes that bilateral agreements can be tailored to provinces’ needs or used to promote innovation. The federal government is providing $3 billion through bilateral agreements over the next four years.

UK - Review of Innovation in the NHS

In June 2011, the British Department of Health initiated consultations and hearings about ways the adoption and diffusion of innovations could be accelerated across the English National Health Service (NHS). This report by U.K. think-tank The Young Foundation is a summary of the responses and expert views submitted during consultations.

UK - Legislation to encourage medical innovation: a consultation

Prepared by the UK Department of Health, this consultation paper accompanies pending British legislation on litigation and clinical negligence resulting from medical innovation. The authors, after soliciting views from healthcare professionals, lawyers, and the public, recommend encouraging medical innovation and taking a cautious approach to legal changes.

Time for Transformative Change: A review of 2004 Health Accord

Brief analytical summaries or syntheses #40 Time for Transformative Change A review of 2004 Health Accord Summary Canada is no longer seen as a model of innovation in health care delivery and financing, says this report from the Standing Senate Committee on Social Affairs, Science and Technology. The committee’s review revealed that real systematic transformation of health care systems across the country had not yet occurred, despite more than a decade of government commitments and increasing investments. The committee made 46 recommendations it believes will truly transform the way health care professionals do business and will achieve lasting reform. Background On January 31, 2011, the Minister of Health requested that the Standing Senate Committee on Social Affairs, Science and Technology initiate the second parliamentary review of the 10-Year Plan to Strengthen Health Care (10-Year Plan), an agreement reached by First Ministers on September 16, 2004 that focuses on federal/provincial/territorial (F/P/T)…

Canada - Catalyzers and brakes on health system innovation in Québec

This project report prepared by Pôle Santé HEC and CIRANO describes results of the first phase of a study aiming to formulate recommendations to the government of Québec to promote the development of a culture of innovation in the health system. It includes a document review and consultation with system stakeholders, and identifies 26 factors that impact innovation.

Canada - Council established to promote innovation and efficiencies in the New Brunswick Health Care System

On January 11, 2013, the government of New Brunswick launched the Innovation and Best Practice Council, which will assist the Office of Health System Renewal by identifying and implementing health innovations and best practices.

Canada - B.C. celebrates innovation in health care

On April 4, 2012, the government British Columbia announced the launch of the B.C. Innovation and Change Agenda. It includes the introduction of innovative healthcare delivery strategies in four categories: innovation and efficiency, health promotion and disease prevention, primary and community care, and acute hospital care.

Canada - From Innovation to Action: The First Report of the Health Care Innovation Working Group

In January 2012, Canada’s provincial premiers met to discuss shared healthcare concerns and established a Working Group to identify innovations in healthcare delivery across Canada. Published in August 2012, this initial report from the Working Group focuses on three priority areas: clinical practice guidelines, team-based health care delivery models, and health human resource management initiatives.

Canada - Policy Innovation is Needed to Match Health Care Delivery Reform: The Story of the Champlain BASE eConsult Service

This commentary says Canada needs to reform health services delivery and finds that the current lack of policy responsiveness hinders the expansion of innovations to improve patient care. To illustrate these challenges and how they might be overcome, the authors explore an innovative electronic specialist consultation start-up that is growing into an Ontario-wide service.

Denmark - Firms’ reshaping of commercialization practices to overcome the ‘not invented here’ phenomenon in public healthcare organizations

This case study of four Public Private Innovation (PPI) projects in Denmark’s public healthcare system describes how the participating companies commercialized co-created welfare solutions. Findings reveal the PPI firms experienced the ‘not invented here’ phenomenon (essentially a resistance to outside innovation) in hospitals and other Danish healthcare services. The phenomenon appears to hamper the commercialization of innovations.

Canada - Ontario Health Innovation Council Delivers Report to Ontario

The Council makes five main recommendations for creating conditions to favour the adoption of new technologies in health care. Entitled The Catalyst, the report calls for the creation of a dedicated office to lead and coordinate innovation efforts, investment in made-in-Ontario technologies, the elimination of barriers to innovation across the health system and closer relationships between industry, research and health sector stakeholders to accelerate commercialization.

UK - New innovation scorecard platform launched

In April 2017, the UK National Health Service (NHS) launched a web platform for the Innovation Scorecard. The scorecard reports on the use of medicines and medical technologies and the platform will make it easier to see uptake of pharmaceuticals and innovations within the NHS. An updated scorecard comes out in summer 2017.

Canada - Premiers Announce Health Care Innovation Working Group

On January 17, 2012, Canada’s 13 provincial and territorial Premiers announced the creation of a Health Care Innovation Working Group composed of all provincial and territorial health ministers. The purpose of the initiative is to enhance capacity to meet new challenges in health care systems, including the needs of seniors, patients with chronic diseases, and Northern populations.

UK - Galvanising the NHS to adopt innovation

Published by the UK Department of Health, this report considers measures proposed by a 2015 National Health Service (NHS) Accelerated Access Review (AAR). The AAR proposals emphasize funding for academic health science networks and call for NHS clinical system leaders and secondary care organizations to take on roles championing innovation in return for financial incentives.

Canada - Putting Innovation to Work: Improving chronic disease management and health system sustainability in Ontario

Produced by the Better Care Faster Coalition, a group of health service providers, professionals, charities, and patient groups, this report issues recommendations for improvements to chronic disease management in Ontario, and identifies barriers to innovation in this area. The report calls for standardized evaluation formats, simplified tracking and reporting of performance indicators, and greater flexibility for innovation at the local level.

Canada - Patient engagement: Why does it matter and how is it done?

Published by the McGill University Health Centre's Institute for Strategic Analysis and Innovation (MUHC-ISAI) and the Health Innovation Forum, this eighth issue of Health innovation Report is completely devoted to the patient as partner. It includes papers on patient experience, patient engagement in system transformation, medical education, health system design and disease self-management, as well as a look at care coordination from the patient's perspective. Three in-depth case studies look at patient partnership initiatives underway at the MUHC.

Canada - Innovative practices from coast to coast to coast now fully integrated in the Leading Practices Database at Accreditation Canada

On February 17, 2014, Accreditation Canada completed the integration of the contents of the Health Innovation Portal (developed and launched by the Health Council of Canada 2012) with its own Leading Practices Database. The Database features more than 900 innovative practices submitted from health care organizations across Canada.

Re-orienting health systems : Towards modern, responsive and sustainable health promoting systems

Brief analytical summaries or syntheses #55 Re-orienting health systems Towards modern, responsive and sustainable health promoting systems Summary This position paper from EuroHealthNet is the culmination of a policy dialogue process with stakeholders, experts and European Union (EU) institutions to identify key contributions to sustainable health systems across Europe. The paper frames its findings in the context of the EU 2020 Europe strategy for continental growth. Background The sustainability of national health systems is a core concern of the European Member States, the European Commission, and the World Health Organisation. As early as 2001, the European Commission identified ‘financial viability’ as one of three long-term objectives for national health systems, along with accessibility and quality. Since then, the development of high-quality, accessible and sustainable services has been in the spotlight of different EU policy agendas social protection, public health, and economic and financial affairs. Initially, the issue was incorporated in…

UK - Paying for quality: an analysis of the impact of the 2010/11 Commissioning for Quality and Innovation Scheme (CQUINs) in London

Published by consultancy MHP Health Mandate, this report examines Commissioning for Quality and Innovation (CQUIN) schemes, an internal U.K. National Health Service (NHS) program that rewards the delivery of quality improvements with financial payments. The report finds that while CQUIN schemes focus on improvements in clinical effectiveness, some merely reward achieving a minimum standard of care.

Brazil - Learning from emerging economies

This HINNOVIC dossier looks at health innovations in Brazil, which has strong domestic capacity in health technology development and policy initiatives around population needs and health inequalities. Health sector commercial agreements with China and India are examined as are instances where more developed countries are looking to Brazilian models to better meet healthcare needs.

Canada - Transformation through Value and Innovation: Revitalizing Health Care in Ontario

Produced by the Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCC), this report calls for healthcare reform in the province that preserves the publically funded single-payer model but increasingly incorporates the private sector as a productive partner. The report includes three case studies of collaborations by Ontario’s public and private sector to improve healthcare value and innovation.

UK - New fund will boost digital innovation

In August 2012, Britain’s Department of Health announced that funding up to £99,000 would be provided to National Health Service (NHS) bodies that devised innovative digital services to improve patient care and information sharing. The grants will be administered by the new Information Sharing Challenge Fund.

UK - Creating a Sustainable 21st Century Healthcare System

Produced by the International Longevity Centre-UK (ILC-UK), this report showcases international examples of health system innovation that could potentially save lives and money in the UK. The report suggests that a sustained focus on innovation and prevention that empowers health consumers while maximizing the potential of big data will deliver significant healthcare savings over the long term.

International - Interprofessional teamwork innovations for primary health care practices and practitioners: evidence from a comparison of reform in three countries

Investigating primary care interprofessional teamwork innovations in Australia, Canada and the US, this Australian review examined 12 studies to assess the impact and local context of reforms. Variations were associated with contextual factors such as the size, power dynamics, leadership, and physical environment of the practice. Unintended consequences included conflict between medical and nonmedical professional groups.

USA - Digital Health Innovation Super-Utilizer Challenge: Themes and Lessons

Although the market for digital health tools is flourishing, few products are designed to meet the needs of low-income, high-need, high-cost patients. To address this market gap, in early 2015 the Center for Health Care Strategies (CHCS) held a national Super-Utilizer Health Innovation Challenge to demonstrate the viability of products designed for this population. This report summarizes themes and lessons from the Challenge.

USA - Proposed health IT strategy aims to promote innovation, protect patients, and avoid regulatory duplication

The US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has released a report proposing a health information technology (health IT) framework that promotes product innovation while maintaining patient protections and avoiding regulatory duplication. The report recommends clarifying the oversight of health IT to focus on product function and patient risk.

Finland - Government to create conditions for competence-based growth of health sector

Finland’s government has just published a 2-year strategic roadmap for health sector research and innovation. Measures include new innovation-friendly regulatory legislation, increases in coordinated funding, and structural health and social service reforms, calibrated to competency-based growth.

UK - National Institute for Health Research challenges researchers and medtech specialists in mental health to improve treatment options

Britain’s National Institute for Health Research has launched an Invention for Innovation Challenge Award to address unmet clinical need in mental health. Aimed at research teams and medical technology specialists, the challenge hopes to promote the development of disruptive technologies or interventions that can improve outcomes for people with mental illness.

UK - Caring to change: how compassionate leadership can stimulate innovation in health care

Produced by a private think-tank for the National Health Service (NHS), this report considers the relationship between innovation, compassionate leadership, and organizational culture in the healthcare sector. The report identifies compassion as the core cultural value of the NHS and analyzes four fundamental elements of a culture for innovative and high-quality care (vision, inclusion, autonomy and support). Case study examples are included.

Canada - Bridging the Gap. Building Collaborative Foundations for an Effective and Efficient Health Care System

In its brief to the Standing Committee on Finance, Bridging the Gap, Building Collaborative Foundations for an Effective and Efficient Health Care System, the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada identifies priorities for investments in health care that will contribute to a healthier society, better patient care, enhanced systems and improved productivity. The Royal College makes four recommendations to be included in the next federal government budget: 1. Leverage investment in human resources for health by laying the groundwork to create a pan-Canadian observatory to help jurisdictions optimize their expenditures in human capital; 2. Invest in health and health care research funding and enhance our ability to recruit and retain leading health, scientific and biomedical researchers; 3. Promote and support innovation in the delivery of high-quality health care to promote Canada as a leader in medical practices, innovation and best practices; and 4. Invest in the health and…

Sweden - Innovation for sustainable health and social care. Value-creating health and social care process based on patient need

Through this publication, VINNOVA wants to publicize a project that was funded under the “catalyst program” from 2005-2008. This project area is considered politically important and receives special emphasis in the Swedish “IT Strategy for Health and Social Care”. The project described the prospects of a “value-creating health and social care process” and its conclusion has resulted in good, interesting ideas and solutions. It also highlighted pressing areas for ongoing research. Sweden is still at the stage of not having successfully developed sustainable IT systems and e-services which can support changes in the patient’s role and good, interconnected health and social care for the patient. VINNOVA’s therefore poses the question: What are the causes?

Working Together for Health: Achievements and Challenges in the Kaiser NHS Beacon Sites Program

A comparison of the NHS and Kaiser Permanente published in the British Medical Journal in 2002 has stimulated a pilot program to adapt the experience of Kaiser in three areas of England. These three areas – Birmingham and Solihull, Northumbria and Torbay – have drawn on the work of Kaiser Permanente in various ways, including improving care for people with long-term conditions, achieving closer integration of primary and secondary care and health and social care, and strengthening the role of clinical leaders. There has been continuing progress since the last report in 2006 on the work in these three areas and many examples of innovation.

Norway - The Government Action Plan for Implementation of the Health&Care21 Strategy

The Norwegian government has released an action plan to implement its Health&Care21 Strategy for research and innovation in the healthcare sector. The new plan calls for the establishment of research programs targeting specialist healthcare services, experimental treatments, public health, service development, innovation, community care and global health.

UK - Getting patients quicker access to innovative healthcare

The UK government’s Accelerated Access Review has been published, laying out plans to make the National Health Service (NHS) a leader in innovation and ensure patients quicker access to cutting-edge health care. This report says that streamlining processes could, in one example, accelerate patient access to new drugs by up to four years.

UK - New care models. Emerging innovations in governance and organisational form

Prepared by The King's Fund for the National Health Service (NHS), this report describes two new care models essential to current NHS strategy: integrated primary and acute care systems (PACS), and multispecialty community providers (MCPs). The report identifies fiscal and care benefits.

Canada - Procurement Can Drive Innovation and Better Care in Canada's Health System

According to the Conference Board of Canada, procurement strategies used internationally in health systems could improve Canadians’ access to innovative technologies and better care without increasing costs. In this report, the Conference Board highlights procurement practices used outside Canada to introduce cost-effective, quality-conscious innovations into public health systems.

USA - New funding gives states and innovators tools and flexibility to implement delivery system reform

The US Department of Health and Human Services is providing significant funding to innovative models designed to deliver better care outcomes and lower costs. The Health Innovation Awards will provide funding for up to three years to projects in a number of targeted areas. As well, the State Innovation Model provides funding to help states design and test improvements to their public and private healthcare payment and delivery systems.

Australia - Australian Medical Research and Innovation Strategy 2016-2021

Australia’s Medical Research Advisory Board has finalized a five-year strategy to support health and medical research and innovation. The strategy sets out the vision and objectives of the new Medical Research Future Fund, a $20 billion vehicle for investment in research into health and medical infrastructure, capacity, translation and commercialization.

USA - Lessons Project Report Showcases Promising Pathways to Make Research More Accessible and Actionable

Promoting research synthesis, translation and dissemination, this report from a 2014 workshop identifies useful innovations and strategies from disciplines relevant to health services research communication. The report highlights the importance of relationships between researchers and policymakers for improving the uptake of research findings.

UK - Health Minister Simon Hamilton launches consultation on ambitious reform of health and social care system in Northern Ireland

On December 15, 2015, the Health Minister of the regional government of Northern Ireland launched a public consultation on reform of the health and social care system. The proposed changes seek to radically reduce bureaucracy by abolishing Ministry agencies and oversight boards, and break down barriers to innovation.

USA - Redefining Health Care Systems

Published by the RAND Corporation, this downloadable 144-page book discusses health services research over the past 50 years and how this research base can stimulate innovation to make patient-centred healthcare systems safer, more efficient, and cost-effective in their responses to increasingly diverse communities. The role physicians can play as thought leaders is emphasized.

Lunch hour conferences

Lunch hour conferences of the Direction générale de la planification, de l'évaluation et de la qualité These lunch hour conferences, organized by the Direction générale de la planification, de l'évaluation et de la qualité, are the result of an initiative by the Direction de la recherche, de l'innovation et du transfert de connaissances and the Direction de l'éthique et de la qualité. They aim to support knowledge transfer through dialogue between researchers and decision-makers regarding research results that have an impact for decision-makers, to discuss possible courses of action, and to reflect on issues and trends in the health and social services sector. They also aim to foster discussions on the quality of our health and social services system and the best means of supporting its continuous improvement.

UK - Head, hands and heart: asset-based approaches in health care

Asset-based healthcare approaches emphasize health and wellbeing self-management, community support, and health promotion and prevention. This report summarizes the theory and evidence behind asset-based approaches with the aid of six British case studies. Key principles for developing health assets are explored, as is the impact of asset projects on UK health outcomes.

China - Reform and Innovation for Better Rural Health Services in China

Launched in 2008 in eight provinces, China’s Rural Health Project focuses on the rural health insurance system and on improving rural health delivery, public hospitals, and core public health services. This article published by the World Bank describes lessons to be learned from China's success in ensuring affordable, equal access to high quality rural health services.

Europe - Hospitals 2020. Hospitals of the future, healthcare of the future

Drawing on the June 2015 conference of the European Hospital and Healthcare Federation held in Warsaw, this report on hospital management in 15 European Union (EU) countries discusses innovations in patient care, clinical work, nursing, human resources, information systems, drug management, laboratory operations, finances, quality control and patient involvement. Information on each of the 15 countries is included.

International - Managing the Risk and Impact of Future Epidemics: Options for Public-Private Cooperation

Commissioned by the World Economic Forum, this briefing analyses the value of private-sector engagement in West Africa’s response to the recent Ebola crisis and captures lessons learned in the wide scope of partnerships and innovations developed at the time. The briefing considers models for public-private cooperation to best address possible future epidemics.

Canada - Reducing Surgical Wait Times. The Case for Public Innovation and Provincial Leadership

British Columbia’s provincial government recently released a policy paper recommending the use of private for-profit facilities to reduce elective surgery wait times. This study provides a review of research on for-profit surgical delivery within public healthcare systems. It presents recommendations that build on best practices from the province of Saskatchewan, along with Scotland, which is recognized as a global leader in public sector wait-time solutions.

International - New approach needed to tackle rising drug prices

The proliferation of high-cost medicines and rising drug prices are increasing pressures on public health spending and calling into question the pharmaceutical industry’s pricing strategies. Governments need to work with the industry and regulators to define a new approach to the development and use of new health technologies that encourages innovation while also delivering more affordable and value for money treatments, according to a new OECD report.

Canada - Building on Canada's Strengths in Regenerative Medicine

This report summarizes a workshop convened by the Council of Canadian Academies in Toronto on October 13 and 14, 2016 to review current strengths and weaknesses in regenerative medicine in Canada. Overall, the workshop report confirms that Canadian regenerative medical research is both of high quality and highly cited. National networks are recognized as enabling Canada to maintain its status as an international leader in the field.

International - Measuring, Reporting, and Rewarding Quality of Care in 5 Nations: 5 Policy Levers to Enhance Hospital Quality Accountability

This study deals with accountability for the quality of hospital care in England, Germany, the Netherlands, Sweden and the US. It identifies five levers to enhance accountability: a central role for standards and incentives; a balance in system centralization to enable national comparisons and promote local innovation; a focus on outcomes transparency; the engagement of providers as proponents; and reporting that focuses on hospitals to ensure comparability and patient choice.

Canada - Gainsharing and shared savings strategies in the healthcare setting: Evidence for effectiveness

Alberta Health Services (AHS) is exploring ways to leverage resources with the aim of improving outcomes and value for money. One way to achieve this is to incentivize and reward innovation and quality improvement using gainsharing or shared savings strategies. This internal report investigates evidence for the effectiveness of these strategies. It summarizes 25 facilitators of gainsharing within the AHS, along with 12 barriers to its implementation.

Europe - Scaling up projects and initiatives for better health: from concepts to practice

Scaling up means expanding or replicating innovative pilot or small-scale projects to reach more people and broaden an intervention’s effectiveness. Using a literature review and results from a survey of policymakers and experts in 10 European countries, this WHO booklet and toolkit addresses the practical challenges of public and private scaling-up activities within national health systems.

International - Visibility: The New Value Proposition for Health Systems

One of the main challenges facing healthcare systems is patient safety: medical errors are now the third leading cause of death in North America. This report from the World Health Innovation Network (WHIN) proposes a new direction to improve patient safety and performance.

Canada - Team-based innovations in primary care delivery in Quebec and timely physician follow-up after hospital discharge: a population-based cohort study

Outpatient follow-up is key to addressing gaps in care after hospital discharge. This Québec study estimated the association between enrolment in new team-based primary care practices and 30-day post-discharge physician follow-up. The study found lower rates of follow-up with a medical specialist among patients enrolled in team-based primary care practices compared with those in traditional primary care practices.

France – Launch of the 2017 national health strategy

On September 18, 2017, the Haut Conseil de la Santé Publique delivered its report on the health status of the French population. Based on the report, the Minister of Health identified four medium and long-term priority themes: prevention and health promotion, addressing social and territorial inequalities in access to health care, increasing the pertinence and quality of care, and innovation.

UK - How is success achieved by individuals innovating for patient safety and quality in the NHS?

In this study, researchers interviewed 15 National Health Service (NHS) professionals who had received a national award for developing healthcare innovations improving patient safety or quality. Four themes emerged from the data: personal determination, an ability to broker relationships and navigate organizational culture, and the effective use of evidence to influence others. Focus and persistence were important personal characteristics.

Europe - Public Consultation on Health and Care in the Digital Single Market

This consultation investigates the need for policy measures that will promote digital innovation for better health and care in Europe. It is seeking views on cross-border access to and management of personal health data, joint European exploitation of digital infrastructure, and measures to support interaction between patients and providers. Citizens, patient organisations, health and care professionals, public authorities, researchers, industries, investors and users of digital health tools are invited to respond to the consultation by October 12 2017.

New Zealand - New Zealand’s first Health Research Strategy launched

New Zealand has launched a strategy to increase government investment in health research. Bringing together health science, research and innovation to form a more cohesive system, the new strategy establishes four priorities: invest in excellence; create a vibrant environment; improve translation to policy and practice; and advance innovative ideas and commercial opportunities.

UK - Reward in the NHS: good practice and innovation taking place across the NHS on reward

In 2016, the National Health Service (NHS) Employers Total Reward Engagement Network (TREN) carried out a survey across the NHS that found a variety of organizational reward practices but no consistent NHS reward strategy. This report views key themes that have emerged through TREN and explores recent changes in NHS approaches to reward. It includes quotes from TREN members and examples of reward practices.

Europe - From innovation to implementation – eHealth in the WHO European Region

This report describes the development of and emerging trends in electronic health (e-health) in the WHO European Region in 2016. Its content and key messages are based on data collected from the 2015 WHO Global eHealth Survey and the assistance of a number of key practitioners in the field. The report gives case examples to illustrate success stories in countries and the practical application of e-health in various settings. Together, the findings and analysis provided in this report offer a detailed insight into the development of e-health in Europe.

International - A New Resource for Exploring Health Care around the World

This website presents profiles of healthcare systems in 18 countries in Europe, North America, and Asia, along with Australia. Readers can compare health system organization and insurance, financing, quality, coordination, efficiency, integration, information technology use, evidence-based practice, cost containment and recent reforms and innovations.

UK - Digital requirements for new primary care models

Drawing on case studies of new health technology use, this briefing examines how technology can enable primary care in the UK to better solve funding issues, workforce shortages, and demands for improved quality of care. The briefing examines innovations such as shared health records, patient portals for appointment booking, remote consultations and telehealth.

Germany - The Health Care Strengthening Act: The next level of integrated care in Germany

Although Germany has traditionally followed a decentralized approach to healthcare services, the government has now introduced legislation to foster the integration of healthcare services. This article describes the change in policy and the annual innovation fund of €300 million ($440 million Cdn) that has been established to start up integrated care programs.

Canada - Financial Models and Fiscal Incentives: Proceedings From the Healthy Canada Conference, June 2016

The conference, held at the end of 2015, provided delegates with practical insights and evidence-based solutions on how financial models and tax incentives can be leveraged to improve population health and the sustainability of the health care system while delivering value for money. Presentations dealt with funding models and with financial incentives in health innovation and to promote healthy behaviours.

UK - Fiscal sustainability and public spending on health

This paper examines the determinants of health spending in the UK and implications for spending projections. It finds that income effects are a more important driver of health spending than demographic change, as are cost pressures arising from innovation in health technology.

Australia - Vision for the health system in Queensland

The Australian state of Queensland has released a 10-year strategy for the state’s healthcare system based on four key priorities: promoting wellbeing; delivering and connecting healthcare; and pursuing innovation. The strategy calls for developing telehealth models for outpatient care and increasing the availability of consumer electronic health data.

New Zealand - Health Research Strategy: discussion document

Seeking public views on a health research and innovation strategy for the next 10 years, this discussion document sets out the framework and guiding principles proposed by New Zealand’s health ministry. The consultation ends July 29, 2016.

International - International profiles of health care systems 2015

This publication presents overviews of the health care systems of Australia, Canada, China, Denmark, England, France, Germany, India, Israel, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Singapore, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United States. Each overview covers health insurance, public and private financing, health system organization and governance, health care quality and coordination, disparities, efficiency and integration, use of information technology and evidence-based practice, cost containment, and recent reforms and innovations.

Assessing initiatives to transform healthcare systems:Lessons for the Canadian healthcare system

Brief analytical summaries or syntheses #25 Assessing initiatives to transform healthcare systems Lessons for the Canadian healthcare system Summary Canada has invested significant financial resources and energy (including numerous federal and provincial commissions) in efforts to make the healthcare system more responsive to evolving needs. Nonetheless, there is general consensus that Canada’s healthcare systems have been too slow to adapt. This paper suggests avenues that governments can take to support the transformation of the healthcare system to provide better care and services. Background This paper suggests that money alone cannot improve healthcare. A clear vision and a coherent set of strategies are required to transform the system and achieve better alignment between the care offered and the care the population needs today (primary healthcare, more effective management of chronic diseases, mental health, etc.). Canada has invested significant financial resources and energy (including numerous federal and provincial commissions) in efforts to…

Canada – Fiscal Sustainability and the Transformation of Canada's Healthcare System: A Shifting Gears Report

This report from Toronto’s Mowat Centre is intended to help facilitate long-term decision-making in Canadian health care. It calls for a shift in perspective through the application of four concepts: treating health care as a high-tech industry; utilizing disruptive innovation; focusing on quality improvement; recognizing that ”Moore’s Law” (of declining costs over time) applies to health care.

Canada — Innovation Procurement in Health Care: A Compelling Opportunity for Canada

Governments are the largest purchasers of health care products and services in Canada. Procurement —what governments and public institutions buy and how they buy it—therefore offers huge potential to improve health system performance and value. But a Conference Board of Canada report finds that Canadians are still hesitating, while others, notably the United Kingdom, use new approaches to procurement to drive fundamental improvements in public health care. The report calls for action on four fronts to seize these opportunities: federal leadership; targeted funding; regional implementation; and culture and attitudes.

Canada — Progress Report 2011: Health care renewal in Canada

This report on Canada's health care performance is a pan-Canadian look at five key commitments of the 2003 First Ministers' Accord on Health Care Renewal and the 2004 10- Year Plan to Strengthen Health Care, and it highlights the progress being achieved to date on wait times, pharmaceuticals management, electronic health records, teletriage, and health care innovation since 2003.

United Kingdom: Management of NHS hospital productivity

Brief analytical summaries or syntheses #13 United Kingdom Management of NHS hospital productivity Summary Hospital productivity has fallen over the last ten years. There have been significant increases in funding and hospitals have used this to deliver against national priorities. But, according to this report from the National Audit Office, hospitals need to provide more leadership, management and clinical engagement to optimise the use of additional resources. Background In 2000, the Department of Health published the NHS Plan, a ten-year vision for reforming the NHS. The Plan argued that the NHS was failing to deliver because it had been under-funded, and set out to substantially increase funding in order to meet public expectations for more and better paid staff using new ways of working; reduced waiting times; high quality patient-centred care; and improvements in local healthcare buildings. The Plan set out the systemic problems of the NHS, such as a…

Decentralization in health care

Brief analytical summaries or syntheses #18 Decentralization in health care Summary The Spring issue of Euro Observer looks at decentralization as a governance tool in health care. Case studies on Norway, Spain and the United Kingdom (U.K.) highlight how decentralized arrangements work in practice in these countries. Background A common challenge across most countries in Europe is finding the appropriate level for the making and implementation of policy and administration, particularly in health care. Many countries have decentralized, recentralized and then decentralized again in an ongoing cycle, searching the right balance of efficiency and responsiveness in their health care system. Looking at the arguments for and against, in many cases the same reasons are used to justify movement in opposite directions. This issue of Euro Observer looks at whether decentralization is purely a politically driven phenomenon or the wrong instrument used for the right objective. The debate about decentralization is…

Canada — Telehealth use in Canada grew by more than 35 per cent annually over the past 5 years: national study

With more than 5,700 telehealth systems in at least 1,175 communities across the country, Canada is a global leader in improving access to care by connecting patients and care providers in different, and frequently, remote locations, according to a new national study released recently, announced Dr. Jennifer Zelmer, Senior Vice-President, Clinical Adoption and Innovation, Canada Health Infoway.

Governance for health in the 21st century : a study conducted for the WHO Regional Office for Europe

Brief analytical summaries or syntheses #27 Governance for health in the 21st century a study conducted for the WHO Regional Office for Europe Summary The WHO Regional Office for Europe recently presented conclusions from an in-depth study of current thinking and innovative practices in governance for health in the 21st century. The study recommends different ways that public authorities can strengthen health governance through collaboration. Background In this study, ‘governance for health’ is defined as the attempts of governments or other actors to steer communities, countries or groups of countries in the pursuit of health as integral to well-being through both a ‘whole-of-government’ and a ‘whole-of-society’ approach. It positions health and well-being as key features of what constitutes a successful society and a vibrant economy in the 21st century and grounds policies and approaches in values such as human rights and equity. Governance for health promotes joint action of health…

International - International profiles of health care systems

This publication from the Commonwealth Fund presents overviews of health care systems in nine European countries, Japan, Australia, Canada, and the U.S. Each overview covers insurance, financing, organization, quality of care, health disparities, efficiency and integration, information technology usage, use of evidence-based practice, cost containment, and reform and innovation. Summary tables provide data on key characteristics and performance indicators.

International Profiles of Health Care Systems

Brief analytical summaries or syntheses #32 International Profiles of Health Care Systems Summary This publication presents overviews of the health care systems of Australia, Canada, Denmark, England, France, Germany, Japan, Italy, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, and the U.S. Each overview covers health insurance, public and private financing, health system organization, quality of care, health disparities, efficiency and integration, use of health information technology, use of evidence-based practice, cost containment, and recent reforms and innovations. In addition, summary tables provide data on a number of key health system characteristics and performance indicators, including overall health care spending, hospital spending and utilization, health care access, patient safety, care coordination, chronic care management, disease prevention, capacity for quality improvement, and public views. Background The Commonwealth Fund is a private foundation that promotes a high performance health care system providing better access, improved quality, and greater efficiency. The Fund carries out…

Canada - Time for Transformative Change: A Review of the 2004 Health Accord

Canada is no longer seen as a model of innovation in health care delivery and financing, says this report from the Standing Senate Committee on Social Affairs, Science and Technology. The committee’s review revealed that real systematic transformation of health care systems across the country had not yet occurred, despite more than a decade of government commitments and increasing investments. The committee made 46 recommendations it believes will truly transform the way health care professionals do business and will achieve lasting reform.

Baskets of services: Comparative analysis of management mechanisms

Brief analytical summaries or syntheses #34 Baskets of services Comparative analysis of management mechanisms Summary Managing the basket of healthcare services promises efficiency gains by rationalizing decisions around coverage and care. This literature review by Joanne Castonguay at CIRANO examines how the basket of services is managed in a sample of OECD countries. The exercise enabled the author to make a number of observations, compare Québec’s management of the basket of services to that in other countries and suggest ways to improve current practices. Background The sustainability of universal health systems is a concern in all OECD countries. The rapid growth in demand for health care and the difficulty in achieving commensurate increases in financing are pushing governments to rethink not only how health systems are organized, but also the way in which funds are allocated. One of the most important cost drivers is technological progress. Medicine is evolving rapidly…

International - Assessing the contribution of prescribing in primary care by nurses and professionals allied to medicine: a systematic review of literature

Legislation enabling nurses and allied heath professionals to prescribe medications exists in some countries, and others are considering introducing such legislation. Questions remain as to the contribution this type of legislation makes to the care of patients in primary care and the evidence base on which clinicians, commissioners of services and policy makers can consider this innovation. This study, published in BMC Health Services Research provides a review of the literature on non-medical prescribing in primary care, looking at its impact on health care quality.

USA — On the Road to Better Value: State Roles in Promoting Accountable Care Organizations

This report examines the development of the accountable care organization (ACO) model, focusing on Colorado, Massachusetts, Minnesota, North Carolina, Oregon, Vermont, and Washington. The report highlights five key areas in which states have played a role in supporting the development of the ACO model (data, designing and promoting new payment methods, accountability measures, identifying and promoting systems of care, and supporting a continuum of care, including the patient-centered medical home) and is intended to provide state and national policymakers with information that can stimulate further innovation.

Europe — Remote patient monitoring and treatment can improve care provision

According to the study “Strategic Intelligence Monitor on Personal Health Systems (SIMPHS): Market Structure and Innovation Dynamics”, telemedicine can help make a difference in the face of an increasingly heavy burden of demand for service in the health sector. In an ageing Europe, where more and more citizens live with chronic diseases, it can prove very useful.

International - International Profiles of Health Care Systems

This publication presents overviews of the health care systems of 13 countries - Australia, Canada, Denmark, England, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United States. Each country summary provides information on insurance coverage and benefits, health system financing, delivery system organization, quality assurance mechanisms, efforts to improve efficiency and control costs, and recent innovations and reforms.

New Zealand - New health website to allow clinicians to network online

The Ministry of Health is developing a new website which will allow doctors, nurses and other specialists in the health sector to come together online to share information and discuss specific topics. Formally called the Health Improvement and Innovation Resource Centre, the website (www.hiirc.org.nz) will feature a “knowledge library” of the latest New Zealand research on health sector productivity, and quality and access to health care. The website, which is being developed by Research New Zealand, will be up and running this July.

UK - The impact of the NHS market: an overview of the literature

NHS ‘internal’ or ‘quasi’ market policies in England have aimed to promote competition among providers in the hope of replicating the benefits markets have been known to bring about in the private sector: decreases in cost, and increases in efficiency, quality, innovation, and provider responsiveness. This briefing presents the results of a large-scale literature search on the effectiveness of these policies over the past 20 years.

UK - Learning from the best: What the NHS needs to do to implement high quality care for all

This paper summarizes discussions that took place at a seminar on lessons for the NHS from high performing health care organizations held on March 12-13,, 2009. The seminar, sponsored by the NHS Institute for Innovation and Improvement, brought together NHS leaders and researchers to explore evidence from studies into high performing organizations, and how this evidence can be applied in the NHS.

New Zealand - Rural Health: Challenges of Distance, Opportunities for Innovation

This report focuses on how to protect and improve the health status of people living in rural New Zealand communities. The report identifies a number of recommendations and suggests actions to enable better access to health and disability services.

Canada - The implementation evaluation of primary care groups of practice: a focus on organizational identity

Since 2002 the Health Ministry of Quebec (Canada) has been implementing a primary care organizational innovation called 'family medicine groups'. This is occurring in a political context in which the reorganization of primary care is considered necessary to improve health care system performance. More specifically, the purpose of this reform has been to overcome systemic deficiencies in terms of accessibility and continuity of care. This paper examines the first years of implementation of the family medicine group program, with a focus on the emergence of the organizational identity of one of the pilot groups located in the urban area of Montreal.

Europe - New policy briefs published for the Belgian European Union Presidency Ministerial Conference on the European Health Workforce

Two joint Health Evidence Network - European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies policy briefs and two policy summaries were prepared for the Belgian EU Presidency Ministerial Conference on ‘Investing in Europe’s health workforce of tomorrow: scope for innovation and collaboration’ (La Hulpe, September 9–10 2010): How to create conditions for adapting physicians’ skills to new needs and lifelong learning, how to create an attractive and supportive working environment for health professionals, assessing future health workforce needs, and using audit and feedback to health professionals to improve the quality and safety of health care.

USA - Realizing Health Reform's Potential: How the Affordable Care Act Will Strengthen Primary Care and Benefit Patients, Providers, and Payers

Although primary care is fundamental to health system performance, the United States has undervalued and underinvested in primary care for decades. This brief describes how the Affordable Care Act will begin to address the neglect of America’s primary care system and, wherever possible, estimates the potential impact these efforts will have on patients, providers, and payers. The health reform law includes numerous provisions for improving primary care: temporary increases in Medicare and Medicaid payments to primary care providers; support for innovation in the delivery of care, with an emphasis on achieving better health outcomes and patient care experiences; enhanced support of primary care providers; and investment in the continued development of the primary care workforce.

The impact of global processes on health systems in Europe

Brief analytical summaries or syntheses #11 The impact of global processes on health systems in Europe Summary The relationship between globalization and health systems is a complex one, where both positive and negative influences are reported. This unsystematic literature review explores the impact of globalization on European health systems and emphasizes the need for national policy-makers and leaders to consider global processes when designing national health systems. Background The world is changing rapidly with increasing life expectancies and improving child survival rates. Globalization has contributed to economic growth. In addition to global economic integration, globalization entails the mobility of capital, goods, services and labour, and can be said to be part of an ideological process justifying neo-liberal economic policies. Globalization is also a dynamic process of global interconnectedness influenced by a number of driving and constraining forces such as technological developments, political influences, economic pressures, changing ideas, and greater awareness…

The role of information and communication technologies in improving health sector efficiency

Brief analytical summaries or syntheses #6 The role of information and communication technologies in improving health sector efficiency Summary This OECD health policy study provides advice on a range of policy options, conditions and practices that policymakers can adapt to their own national circumstances to accelerate adoption and effective use of information and communication technologies (ICTs) in health care. It analyses the incentives and institutional mechanisms used to encourage the adoption of these technologies in six OECD countries (Australia, Canada, The Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, and the United States). It presents an analysis of the range of incentives and institutional mechanisms that have been applied to influence introduction and successful adoption of ICTs, examines the results of these initiatives, looks at some of the new technologies in health care and helps identify the challenges in securing cooperation from the different stakeholders involved. Background Policymakers in OECD countries are faced with ever-increasing…

USA - Strengthening Primary and Chronic Care: State Innovations to Transform and Link Small Practices

This report examines the roles states are playing to reorganize the delivery of primary and chronic care to produce more efficient and effective care for patients and providers, particularly in small practices. Through short case studies developed via interviews with state officials and physicians in Colorado, Michigan, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, and Vermont, the authors highlight several state-based initiatives that seek to create high-performing health systems by targeting local and regional strengths.

Canada - First steps toward a family doctor for every Manitoban by 2015

Manitoba will introduce nurse-practitioner-led quick-care clinics and mobile clinics while expanding the successful Advanced Access care model as the first steps toward ensuring every Manitoban who wants a family doctor has one by 2015, Premier Greg Selinger announced recently. Manitoba’s plan will not only focus on introducing more doctors and nurses into the system but also on innovations to help front-line providers see more patients faster.

UK - The NHS White Paper: evolution or revolution?

In the first of a new series of Centerpiece articles analysing policy innovations by the coalition government, Zack Cooper assesses the plans for healthcare reform in the light of recent Centre for Economic Performance research.

Canada - The Scope of Medicare: What makes sense today? Report from the MUHC-ISAI’s fourth annual conference

The McGill University Health Centre’s Institute for Strategic Analysis and Innovation (MUHC-ISAI) enables the MUHC to contribute to the ongoing development of health care policy. This report presents highlights from the conference it held on October 26 and 27, 2011 to evaluate Canada’s performance against increasing costs and expectations and explore the scope of Medicare with a view to encouraging and supporting an effective framework for change. It includes presentations on health system changes in the U.K. and The Netherlands and talks by Jeffrey Simpson, Pierre-Gerlier Forest, Claude Castonguay, Philippe Couillard, André Picard and others.

International - A governance model for integrated primary/secondary care for the health-reforming first world - results of a systematic review

Internationally, key healthcare reform elements rely on improved integration of care between primary and secondary sectors. This systematic review synthesized 21 studies on elements of integrated primary/secondary healthcare. Elements included: joint planning; integrated information technology; shared clinical priorities; incentives; innovation; population focus; professional development; and patient and community engagement.

Canada - Call for projects: Québec-Maharashta Cooperation

In 2009, the first call for proposals of cooperation between Quebec and the Indian state of Maharashtra was launched. This call for projects aimed to implement the Joint Declaration on Cooperation between the Government of Quebec and the Government of Maharashtra, signed in 2006 by the Quebec premier of the time and his Marathi counterpart. The ministère des Relations internationales, de la Francophonie et du Commerce extérieur (MRIFCE) has since supported projects between partners in Quebec and Marathi in areas as diverse as research and innovation, the environment, the sharing of expertise in health, literature, art, etc.. This call for proposals aims to encourage the continuation of such collaborations. Parties with an interest in undertaking a project with partners from Maharashtra are invited to submit a proposal by April 8, 2014.

International - International Profiles of Health Care Systems, 2013

This publication presents overviews of health systems in Australia, Canada, Denmark, Great Britain, France, Germany, Japan, Italy, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, and the US. Each overview covers health insurance, public and private financing, system organization and governance, healthcare quality and coordination, efficiency and integration, information technology use and evidence-based practice, cost containment, and recent reforms and innovations.

New Zealand - Targeting Waiting Times

This report published by New Zealand’s Health Ministry examines how that country’s district health boards are achieving three patient access targets — briefer emergency department stays, improved access to elective surgery, and shorter wait times for cancer treatment. Nine case studies describe initiatives, innovations and organizations that contribute to improvements.

France - Marisol Touraine presents the new health law

On June 19, 2014, Minister of Health and Social Affairs, Marisol Touraine, presented the broad lines of France's new health law to healthcare professionals. The law addresses the root of health inequalities, increases the provision of care close to home, and accords high priority to using innovation to maintain the health system at the highest level of excellence. It offers the French a simplified reimbursement of care, shorter waits for consultation, and more fluid and understandable care trajectories.

Ireland - Review of Measures to Reduce Costs in the Private Health Insurance Market 2014

Prepared by the Irish Health Insurance Authority, this review of cost reduction measures in Ireland’s private insurance market analyzes claims data and assesses cost drivers for health insurance. It looks, in particular, at the effects of medical technology and innovation. Submissions from relevant stakeholders are included.

Canada - Canada Needs Federal Leadership to Accelerate Health Innovation and Improve System Performance

On December 2, 2014, 39 national healthcare organizations that comprise the Health Action Lobby (HEAL) issued a consensus statement calling for the federal government to embrace the Canadian Way of addressing national health issues through compassion, consensus, and collaboration. The statement is intended to prompt federal parties to articulate their positions on health care in advance of elections in 2015.

UK - Implementing the NHS five year forward view: aligning policies with the plan

The Forward View, a 2014 strategic plan published by the UK National Health Service (NHS), outlined how NHS services must move towards care models that reflect Britain’s diversity. Written in response to the strategic plan, this paper warns that it will fail unless significant changes are made to policy and NHS leadership. The paper recommends new care models and implementation support.

Australia - Funding Indigenous organisations: improving governance performance through innovations in public finance management in remote Australia

Commissioned by the Australian government, this report explores how funding modalities can improve governance performance and service delivery outcomes in Australia’s remote Indigenous communities. The report considers current public finance arrangements, examines domestic and international case studies of different funding modalities, and proposes alternative funding approaches.

UK - CMO Professor Dame Sally Davies makes 14 recommendations to improve public mental health services

This report looks at the epidemiology of mental health in the UK, the quality of evidence, possible future innovations in science and technology, and the economic case for good mental health. It also outlines the importance of treating mental health as equal to physical health. The Chief Medical Officer's recommendations target changes required from specific organizations in the UK.

Europe - Smart governance for health and well-being: the evidence

Governance for health describes the attempts of governments and other actors to steer communities, whole countries or even groups of countries in the pursuit of health as integral to well-being. This study tracks recent innovations to address the priority determinants of health and categorizes them into five strategic approaches to smart governance for health. It relates the emergence of joint action by the health and non-health sectors, public and private actors and citizens, all of which have increasing roles to play in achieving seminal changes in 21st-century societies.

International - Resources, attitudes and culture: an understanding of the factors that influence the functioning of accountability mechanisms in primary health care settings

Webs of accountability relationships exist within every health system. There is a need to strike a balance between achieving accountability upwards within the health system while at the same time allowing for the local level innovation that could improve quality of care and patient responsiveness. Published in BMC Health Services Research, this literature review examines factors that influence the functioning of accountability mechanisms.

UK - Clinicians in management: does it make a difference?

This report from the Centre for Innovation in Health Management at the University of Leeds adds to the evidence base to support the benefits of clinical leadership by focusing on the strategic governance of NHS hospital trusts in England. The qualifications of board members were matched against performance results in 102 trusts. Among the findings: Increasing the number of doctors on boards significantly increases quality assessed by ratings, lower morbidity rates and increased patient satisfaction.

USA - Aligning Health Information Technology and Delivery System Transformation Efforts: Themes from a Discussion among State and National Leaders

This State Health Policy Briefing describes an April 2012 meeting between US state and national leaders to consider ways in which delivery system transformations can capitalize on information technology and improve health care. Provider and plan measurement, payment reform, care delivery innovation, and consumer engagement are discussed.

UK - NHS procurement: Raising our game

This report from the UK Department of Health describes the government’s Procurement Pledge to ensure that the public sector is faster to do business with and maximises opportunities to drive economic growth and stimulate innovation. It sets out the steps that the National Health Service (NHS) must take to respond to this challenge and make the best possible use of its huge spending power.

Canada - Office of Health System Renewal being established in New Brunswick

On April 26, 2012, the Minister of Health announced the creation of a new Office of Health System Renewal to provide focused leadership and accelerate efforts to build a sustainable healthcare system in New Brunswick. Initial priorities include an organizational review leading to management efficiencies, a review of shared services and the identification and implementation of health innovations and best practices.

Canada – We can have it all: Why health care will still be affordable

In the November issue of Policy Options, American economist William Baumol argues that innovation in the overall economy will make growing health care costs affordable. A specialist in why personal service industries resist productivity gains, Baumol is the author of the book, published in 2012, “The Cost Disease: Why Computers Get Cheaper and Health Care Doesn’t.”

Italy - Italian mutual benefit societies: an organizational social innovation in health and healthcare system

This paper from AICCON Cooperazione looks at the role played in Italian healthcare by mutual benefit societies (MBSs), traditional local insurance cooperatives that offer healthcare and welfare benefits to members. The paper says MBSs are an important supplement to Italian government policies for integrating health and welfare costs.

Canada – Québec-China third call for proposals

The governments of Quebec and China announced the launch of a third call for Québec-China proposals for collaboration in research and innovation. Two research projects will be supported financially: one in the field of information and communications technology (ICT) and one in the field of life sciences.

Canada - Leading the Way to Healthcare Improvement in Quebec: Three CFHI-Funded Healthcare Transformation and Coordination Approaches Realize Results

Three Quebec-led teams are accelerating the transformation of health care and seeing positive change, as a result of having applied innovative project and change-management processes to the healthcare challenges in their regions. The reports, funded by the Canadian Foundation for Healthcare Improvement (CFHI), look at an approach for developing inter-organisational collaboration developed at the University of Sherbrooke; the creation of a transition support office within a university health centre; and a healthcare management and governance innovation lab.

Reducing waste in health care

Brief analytical summaries or syntheses #56 Reducing waste in health care Summary A key target in slowing healthcare spending in the US is the elimination of waste, which is thought to constitute over one third of all American health spending. This policy brief published in Health Affairs focuses on the types of waste in health care and ways to eliminate it. Background Health care spending in the United States is widely deemed to be growing at an unsustainable rate, and policy makers increasingly seek ways to slow that growth or reduce spending overall. A key target is eliminating waste — spending that could be eliminated without harming consumers or reducing the quality of care that people receive and that, according to some estimates, may constitute one-third to nearly one-half of all US health spending. Waste can include spending on services that lack evidence of producing better health outcomes compared to…

Canada - Measuring What Matters: The Cost vs. Values of Health Care

This white paper on Canada’s healthcare system from the Ivey International Centre for Health Innovation considers five key questions about stakeholder values and their alignment with funding, reimbursement, measures, and incentives. It also assesses whether Canada’s health care values and performance outcomes compare well over time to other OECD nations.

Primary care for the 21st century

Brief analytical summaries or syntheses #50 Primary care for the 21st century Summary Many GPs in New Zealand work collaboratively in independent practitioner associations (IPAs). These are networks whose functions include quality control and the delivery of complementary primary health services. This report, published by the U.K.’s Nuffield Trust looks at the evolution of IPA’s role within the health system. Background As the National Health Service (NHS) in England prepares to give general practitioners (GPs) a leading role in commissioning local health services, it is clear that general practice itself needs to be strengthened and made into an effective foundation for transformed, integrated care. This report offers insights from the experience of organized general practice in New Zealand. Over the past two decades, many GPs and other primary care clinicians in New Zealand have worked collaboratively in independent practitioner associations (IPAs). These networks of primary care providers developed in the…

International - Better dementia care and a future cure require action today, says OECD

Nearly 50 million people are living with dementia worldwide, costing societies over half a trillion US dollars each year. This OECD report considers the current policy approach to tackling dementia socially and economically unsustainable, and calls on countries to take action now to improve the lives of people living with dementia and their carers, prioritise public research on dementia, and improve the incentives for private investment in dementia innovation. Incentives for collaboration may help.