There are times it feels difficult to believe that the holiday season is almost upon us once again. This year seems to have gone by especially quickly! I guess the old adage about time appearing to pass by faster and faster the older you get is true—at least for me! In any case, here we are, and I’d like to take this opportunity to wish you peace, hope and joy during the holiday season, and throughout 2020.
As I look back, 2019 has been an amazing and transformative year for IQMH. After 45 years as part of the Ontario Medical Association (OMA), initially as a department and then a subsidiary, IQMH has recently completed a transfer process to become an affiliate of Accreditation Canada. Joining forces with Canada’s premier healthcare accreditation organization with an international presence in over 30 countries will help us expand our services so that we can have more impact as we align and jointly pursue our goal of improving patient safety and the quality of healthcare. I will keep you informed about our progress as we move forward together.
On behalf of IQMH, I would also like to express our sincere gratitude to the OMA for everything they have done for IQMH over the years and for all the support they have provided us to ensure a smooth and seamless transition. The OMA has been an amazing organization to have been a part of and we wish them continued success.
While the transition work required to complete the transfer was intensive and time-consuming, our wonderful staff at IQMH also managed an exceptionally busy year in all areas in which IQMH currently operates: Accreditation, Proficiency Testing and Education.
Our Accreditation teams completed more than 140 laboratory site assessments, 38 specimen collection centre visits, 7 diagnostic imaging site accreditation visits and processed 42 self-assessments. We also had an external assessment of our Centre for Accreditation conducted by a team from the Asia Pacific Accreditation Cooperation (APAC), a regional body of the International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (ILAC) of which IQMH is a signatory member.
Our Centre for Proficiency Testing also had a busy year adding several new surveys and preparing for a completely redesigned Chemistry survey program to be launched in 2020. We are also exploring new technological solutions for gathering survey data that will help reduce the effort of manual result entry and associated transcription errors.
In addition to the IQMH educational courses offered throughout 2019, our Centre for Education also developed and hosted two amazing forums. The spring forum focused on pre-analytical best practices while the fall forum covered a variety of topics related to innovations in cancer diagnostics and ended with several patients sharing their personal stories.
Looking forwards, I am sure 2020 will be an exciting year as we work closely with Accreditation Canada. We have an amazing team at IQMH, and I am so proud to be part of it.
In the meantime, I hope you have an opportunity to spend quality time with your family and friends over the holidays and get a chance to relax, renew and re-energize for the New Year ahead.