Ontario Shores Centre for Mental Health Sciences (Ontario Shores) has been recognized by Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) for achieving Stage 7 in the Electronic Medical Record Adoption Model (EMRAM). This means Ontario Shores is the first hospital in Canada and the first mental health hospital in the world to achieve the HIMSS Analytics EMRAM Stage 7 Award. But so what? What does this mean for the care being provided at Ontario Shores?
As the Director of Professional Practice and Clinical Information, it is important for me to highlight that this accomplishment was not about the award itself but rather about the principles this designation promotes: patient safety and quality of care. Our transformation from Stage 6 to 7 has been to advance a culture of adoption with our electronic medical record (EMR), where we are not just ‘dumping’ data into the EMR but in fact using the information towards enhancing patient safety and the quality of mental health care we provide at Ontario Shores.
Lots of people may choose to sit on a beach or visit famous faraway places when they get a few days off, but I chose something quite local, historical, and political instead. I took the opportunity to affect change on a larger scale.
As the past-president of the Canadian Federation of Mental Health Nurses (CFMHN), I am very pleased to represent psychiatric nurses nationally as a board member of the Canadian Alliance on Mental Illness & Mental Health (CAMIMH). CAMIMH is a non-profit organization made up of health care providers and organizations which represent individuals with lived experience of mental illness.
Established in 1998, CAMIMH is a volunteer run alliance of national organizations whose activities span the broad continuum of mental health. They represent consumers and their families; health care and social service providers; professional associations; and community and research organizations. Together, we at CAMIMH constitute a vibrant network of national, provincial and community-based organizations dedicated to serving the mental health needs of the people of Canada from coast-to-coast-to-coast. Their lived mission is to promote and facilitate the development, adoption, and implementation of a national action plan on mental illness and mental health. To achieve this, CAMIMH aims to engage Canadians in a national conversation about mental illness.
Our 17 year old son, Shayne, lost all hope and believed things were never going to get any better and as a result, took matters into his own hands. On March 3, 2014, our son hanged himself in our stairwell, just outside our bedroom doors. We have now entered into a realm that no parent or person should have to enter.
Suicide devastates those left behind and its wake is widespread, affecting all those who knew the person. It is a permanent solution to an often temporary problem, either real or perceived, that once completed cannot be reversed and erases any future that the person was destined to have. The impact of the death is felt by many, yet understood by few, if any.
For every person that dies by suicide, there are several lives that are deeply impacted, whose lives are forever changed. Mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, aunts, cousins, wives, husbands, children, friends, colleagues—the list is endless and the impact massive, if not catastrophic.
I believe that if that person truly understood the pain, the devastation and the hurt left behind, they would not intentionally inflict such pain and suffering on their families, friends, teachers, therapists or others. However, I also believe in that moment of impulsivity, isolation and despondency, there is no logical thought. From their point of view; either based on untrue assumptions or internalized thoughts focused on the relentless struggle, pain and heaviness; death seems very logical and the only solution. BUT it isn’t!