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New partnership showcases The Ottawa Hospital’s ground-breaking quality improvement framework

The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada is encouraging its community of specialists to leverage The Ottawa Hospital’s Innovation Framework, a five-step method to solve quality problems in health care.

The Ottawa Hospital Innovation Framework walks health-care teams through the process of developing and executing quality improvement (QI) initiatives, from defining the problem to implementing solutions. Created by The Ottawa Hospital’s Quality Team, the Framework has been a cornerstone of the hospital’s QI initiatives since 2016.

“Our collaboration with The Ottawa Hospital enables us to present our members with a powerful tool to drive quality improvement and ultimately deliver better patient care,” says Susan Moffatt-Bruce, CEO of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada.

The Royal College is the national organization responsible for certifying specialists in Canada and setting standards for specialty medical education. The Royal College represents a community of more than 50,000 medical and surgical specialists and resident affiliates. This summer, as part of its mandate to provide physicians with continuing professional development, the Royal College began promoting the Framework to its members as a systematic approach with accompanying support tools, to guide them on their own quality improvement projects to strengthen patient care.

Royal College Fellows with experience in quality improvement have praised the Framework, particularly for being developed specifically for the health-care field.

“Using a framework with a built-in, step-by-step guide is very helpful when planning a quality improvement initiative,” says Dr. Lucie Filteau, FRCPC, President of the Canadian Anesthesiologists’ Society and Physician with the Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine at The Ottawa Hospital. “The Royal College has chosen to showcase The Ottawa Hospital Innovation Framework because it was specifically created for the health-care setting, is suitable for a wide variety of health-care initiatives, and has been used successfully for several years at The Ottawa Hospital.”

“The Ottawa Hospital Innovation Framework was developed by health care for use in health care,” praises Dr. Anne Matlow, FRCPC, Professor of Medicine and Paediatrics at the University of Toronto. “It is a welcome addition to physicians’ toolkits, particularly for those who have not previously engaged in QI activities and for those who do not work in a setting where formal QI activities are already underway.”

“We are thrilled to collaborate with the Royal College to promote health-care improvement at the national level in Canada,” says Samantha Hamilton, Director of Quality at The Ottawa Hospital and lead author of the Innovation Framework. “We’ve educated well over 1,200 health-care professionals in this method, and it continues to prove itself a practical and effective method to achieve improvement and innovation.”

The Ottawa Hospital Innovation Framework is publicly accessible on the website of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. The Framework was also published in the International Journal for Quality in Health Care in July 2020.

About The Ottawa Hospital

The Ottawa Hospital is committed to providing each patient with the world-class care, exceptional service and compassion that they would want for their loved ones. Over their three campuses, they serve tens of thousands of patients in Ottawa and the surrounding area each year. They rank fifth in Canada for total research funding and published over 2,200 research papers in 2019. As one of the largest research hospitals throughout the country, they are constantly innovating and providing new insight into the health-care sector.

About the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada

The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada is the national professional association that pursues excellence in medical education, professional standards, and building physician competence. The Royal College protects the health of Canadians by helping physicians build skills, knowledge and expertise through lifelong learning and continuing professional development. The Royal College accredits the university programs that train resident physicians for their specialty practices, as well as administers the examinations that residents must pass to become certified as specialists. In collaboration with health organizations and government agencies, the Royal College also plays a role in developing sound health policy in Canada. To find out more, please visit

For Media Inquiries:

The Ottawa Hospital

Rebecca Abelson, Media Relations Officer

The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada

Melissa Nisbett, Communications Advisor