New website aims to help Nova Scotians get information about the health care system

A new website will provide health care information, such as waiting lists for long-term care and information on recruiting physicians in Nova Scotia.

The Action for Health website aims to help Nova Scotians understand how government tracks and measures progress in improving the system for patients and health care providers.

The indicators are available at https://novascotia.ca/actionforhealth.

Some information such as emergency room visits and hospital occupancy percentages will be updated daily. Other information will be updated quarterly or annually depending on when the information is available.

Information on the website will include:

  • number of recruitments of family physicians, nurse practitioners and registered nurses
  • percentage of Nova Scotians seeking a primary care provider through the Need a Family Practice Registry
  • waiting lists for home care and long-term care admissions
  • the percentage of hospital admissions for people whose complex needs could have been better met by primary health care
  • patient experience with hospitals
  • employee satisfaction levels
  • ambulance unloading time
  • daily information on ER visits and hospital admissions, discharges and surgeries
  • hospital occupancy percentages and trends over time.

“Our health care system is complex, and pressure in one part of the system impacts all the others,” Health Minister Michelle Thompson said in a news release.

“Change will not happen overnight. But by sharing this information now, we are holding ourselves accountable to ensure that change happens and that the system improves in the areas that matter most to Nova Scotians.

Ambulance offload times at emergency departments will be among the areas that will be tracked on the Government of Nova Scotia’s new health information website. – Salt Thread

Progress to follow

The website also aims to track progress in specific areas:

  • hiring more than 350 registered nurses and licensed practical nurses at Nova Scotia Health and IWK Health, between January and September 2022
  • recruit 160 new doctors between April 2021 and March 2022
  • expanding opportunities for licensed practical nurses to become registered nurses
  • expand VirtualCareNS to give people access to online primary care
  • launch of a recruitment campaign for nursing staff
  • cut red tape for doctors
  • $57 million to attract, hire and train more continuing care assistants, including offering free tuition to students and opening beds for seniors faster
  • increase the salaries of nursing aides in the public continuing care sector by up to 23%
  • establishment of a paramedical working group to develop shared solutions
  • implement the direct triage policy across the province, which will allow paramedics to spend less time waiting in the hospital with low-risk patients and more time available to respond to emergencies
  • the creation of the Health Equity Partnership Table comprising the province, the Nova Scotia Department of Health and IWK Health; its first meeting will take place in July and will focus on the development of a health equity framework, metrics and indicators
  • new recovery support center opens in Dartmouth for people seeking help with addictions or gambling
  • opened the province’s first acute mental health day hospital at the QEII Health Sciences Center in Halifax.

The Conservatives’ 2022-2023 budget included $5.7 billion in health care spending.

More soon

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