An environmental scan of quality improvement and
patient safety activities in emergency medicine in

CAN-EK-EM QIPS Activities

Canadian Emergency Departments (ED)

Objective: We conducted an environmental scan of quality improvement and patient safety (QIPS) infrastructure and activities in academic emergency medicine (EM) programs and departments across Canada. 

Methods: We developed 2 electronic surveys through expert panel consensus to assess important themes identified by the CAEP QIPS Committee. Survey 1 was sent by email to all 17 Canadian medical school affiliated EM department Chairs and Academic Hospitals department Chiefs; Survey 2 to 12 identified QIPS leads in these hospitals. This was followed by 2 monthly email reminders to participate in the survey. 

Results: 22/70 (31.4%) Department Chairs/Chiefs completed Survey 1. Most (81.8%) reported formal positions dedicated to QIPS activities within their groups, with a mixed funding model. Less than half of these positions have dedicated logistical support. 11/12 (91.7%) local QIPS leads completed Survey 2. Two-thirds (63.6%) reported explicit QIPS topics within residency curricula, but only 9.1% described QIPS training for staff physicians. Many described successful academic scholarship output, with the total number of peer-reviewed QIPS-related publications per centre ranging from 1-10 over the past 5 years. Few respondents reported access to academic supports: methodologists (27.3%), administrative personnel (27.3%), and statisticians (9.1%). 

Conclusion: This environmental scan provides a snapshot of QIPS activities in EM across academic centres in Canada. We found significant local educational and academic efforts, although there is a discrepancy between the level of formal support/infrastructure and such activities. There remains opportunity to further advance QIPS efforts on a national level, as well as advocating and supporting local QIPS activities.

Authors: Edmund S.H. Kwok, Jeffrey J. Perry, Shawn Mondoux, Lucas B. Chartier

Edmund S H Kwok -

Preliminary data gathering/ baseline