This is a pivotal time in the evolution of health care both in Ontario and globally. As the population ages, there are significant challenges and opportunities for the way we deliver and even think about health care. Complex needs and the growing prevalence of chronic illnesses create new demands on our health system; demands that call upon us in every profession, every position and every location to consider new ways to engage patients in their health care and to seek continuous improvement in all we do.
As the education solution provider for Ontario’s health care system for 60 years, The Michener Institute has dug deeply into these and other challenges to identify how to add the most value to the Ontario health care system. As hospitals, community health providers and health policy decision-makers are working hard to adapt to these changing health care needs, Michener is designing curriculum to ensure that current and future health professionals are equipped to lead in their field of practice and in health system improvements.
Continuing Education programs at Michener are meeting this need for health professionals who want to develop the new and complementary skills required in today’s health care environment. Here are a few key examples to demonstrate how we are addressing these needs:
- With a stated priority on better preparing health care professionals to work with the rapidly growing number of seniors across Canada, we recently introduced a primer: ‘Working with Seniors,’ in partnership with Baycrest Health Centre. This hybrid program, combining core online curriculum with simulation, is also a key component of all our full-time programs, ensuring our students have the knowledge, skills and empathy to work with seniors. We are also making it available to health professionals across the system, providing the foundational knowledge to work with the unique needs of our aging population.
- We expanded our Diabetes Educator and Diabetes Specialty programs to address the health system priority of preventing and treating chronic illnesses. And we are reintroducing our Asthma and COPD Educator Certificate.
- We have integrated quality improvement as a core course within a recently introduced Clinical Management Certificate Program and have ensured it remains a strong emphasis in all of our leadership training. We have also ensured that all full-time students receive quality curriculum and graduate with the knowledge and skills to be active contributors to quality improvement within their own work environments.
- We are supporting the changing health labourr needs in Ontario, taking cues from the changing roles in diagnostic cytology, from rapidly advancing technologies and potential role changes in medical radiation sciences, and from the need for better community supports for children dependent on respiratory technology. Program development is under way in these and many other areas.
These are but a few examples of how Michener is growing our commitment to the health system of the present and the future. We have an important role to play in ensuring our students and graduates are leading the way.
“After taking this course, I realized that Working with Seniors should be a mandatory course that everyone in [the] health care system should take…”
Full time Michener student, 2015