Jacques Nadeau Le Devoir Quebec Minister of Health, Christian Dubé (behind right), accompanied Michel Delamarre (left), former president and CEO of the CIUSSS, during a press scrum of the Capitale-Nationale and new access coordinator, Monday.
Overflowing emergencies, growing waiting lists for surgery, delays in obtaining an appointment with a specialist doctor… Quebec Minister of Health, Christian Dubé, announces a new measure to try to resolve the problems of the public health network: a position of “access coordinator”, whose mission will be to improve the First Line Access Desk (GAP).
The former president- general director of the CIUSSS de la Capitale-Nationale Michel Delamarre inherits this tough mandate, which aims to break down “silos in the health network” and “implement best practices across Quebec”.
“The recipes are known. Sometimes, it takes the right chef to make the recipe,” illustrated Mr. Dubé alongside Mr. Delamarre, during a press scrum held in an appointment center of the 811 telephone line, responsible for assign GAP appointments.
Michel Delamarre led a Quebec tour from October 2022 to June 2023 in order to take stock of the GAP. He submitted a report to the Ministry of Health and Social Services which was made public on Monday.
In light of its findings, Quebec says it wants to ensure that patients who call the GAP can discuss several health problems during an appointment with a family doctor. In the future, GAP nurses could offer longer time slots depending on the needs of patients. At the moment, the expected duration for an initial consultation is usually 15 minutes. And in some healthcare settings, only one problem can be addressed.
But Mr. Delamarre's mission goes beyond GAP, explained the Minister of Health in a press scrum. The work of the access coordinator will be evaluated based on three “major” indicators: “surgeries that are late, emergencies and the CRDS, the appointment center for specialist [doctors],” explained Christian. Dubé.
In emergencies, the minister underlines that the waiting time on stretchers has increased from 21 hours to 17 hours in the last year, but that it is currently stagnating. “It’s not going down any further. » Best practices, he continues, must be established everywhere. “We had a crisis unit which brought about a lot of improvements in some of our emergencies. It's not equal everywhere. »
The Minister of Health indicates that an action plan concerning the GAP will be presented in December. A strategic health plan, which will cover the next three years, will also be submitted in the coming weeks. It will provide concrete actions aimed at reducing the waiting time on stretchers to 14 hours, the ministerial target.
The occupancy rate in Quebec emergencies was 125% on average at 1 p.m. Monday , according to the Index Santé website. This percentage was 240% at Mont-Laurier Hospital, 211% at the Jewish General Hospital of Montreal, 184% at the Montreal General Hospital, 173% at the Royal Victoria Hospital, 175% at the Montreal Children's Hospital, 175% at the Hôtel-Dieu d'Arthabaska and 171% at the Hôtel-Dieu de Sorel.