New Brunswick partnership with TPSC aims to improve safety in nursing homes

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New Brunswick partnership with TPSC aims to improve safety in nursing homes 10 November

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By Laura Brown of Global News Canada

FREDERICTON – Collaborators in New Brunswick and the Netherlands have worked together to establish a Canadian first in the hopes of preventing incidents within nursing homes.

The New Brunswick Continuing Care Safety Association (NBCCSA), along with the New Brunswick Association of Nursing Homes (NBANH), are launching an electronic safety program in nursing homes, beginning Monday.

It’s a made-for-New Brunswick software that operates in real-time. If an incident happens to an employee within a nursing home, no matter how big or small, the employee involved is encouraged to fill out a form, documenting what happened.

Once a form is submitted, all necessary parties can immediately see what happened, where it happened and why.

“We have so many instances where it’s a pinch, it’s a bruise, it’s a band-aid. Those things don’t go into Worksafe, so what are the true numbers out there?” said Denise Paradis, executive director of NBCCSA.

Paradis says it’s about recognizing the importance of smaller incidents, so that managers can work on an action plan to prevent something bigger from happening.

“All those little events that give you the warning signs, something bigger is coming if you don’t do anything about it,” she said.

Over the past year, Paradis worked closely with the Netherlands’ Patient Safety Company to develop the program.

Hospitals in the Netherlands have been using a similar program for some time. The nation has been recognized for its innovation in long-term care.

“It is really interesting to see how important this is becoming in Canada because in the Netherlands we’ve already been through that phase and it’s been established, especially in hospitals, for a while,” said Krysta Blyleven, an IT consultant with the safety company.

Blyleven traveled to New Brunswick to help with the launch. She said she was a little shocked jurisdictions in Canada didn’t have a program like it yet.

“If we roll time back three years ago, we were the most dangerous place to work in New Brunswick,” said Michael Keating, executive director of the NBANH.

“Nursing homes had the highest levels of Worksafe compensation claims, we had the highest number of accidents and incidents and we tried as hard as we could to find what was going to fit best to be able to protect residents and to protect our employees.”

There’s already interest in tweaking the program to suit other Canadian provinces, like Saskatchewan and Nova Scotia.

It’s being rolled out at Passamaquoddy Lodge in St. Andrews, N.B., Monday afternoon. From there, the program will be introduced in the Saint John area this week, in the hopes of reaching every nursing homes across the province by the end of January.

Keating says, in addition to having more data and information on incidents, he hopes the program will encourage more employees to report incidents.

Paradis says no incident is too small to report.

“This will help them realize that reporting is a good thing because things can get resolved,” she said.

Those involved would like to see the program used in N.B. hospitals and for home care workers in the future.

Source: Global News Canada