Saskatchewan Snapshot

Community Research

Tuesday November 17, 9:00 - 10:00
Moderator: Chris Plishka

Knowledge Mobilization Tool to Promote, Protect and Support Breastfeeding during COVID-19

Dr. Shela Hirani (Principal Investigator and Associate Professor, University of Regina)

Project background: Breastmilk is essential for the growth and development of young children. Considering its benefits, breastfeeding is recommended at all times for young children, especially during crisis situations such as the COVID-19 pandemic. The goal of this knowledge mobilization project was to develop and disseminate an animated video on "Breastfeeding during COVID-19". The developed e-resource provided need-based information to breastfeeding mothers who may lack breastfeeding support and access to information during the current state of emergency and self-isolation. This evidence-based e-resource facilitated in clarifying misconceptions surrounding breastfeeding during COVID-19 and raising public awareness on safe infant feeding practices during this pandemic.


Saskatchewan Farmer and Rancher Mental Health Initiative

Michelle Pavloff (Principal Invetigator) and Justine Lustig (Pattient Family Partner)

Project background: Globally, farmers have been found to have higher rates of psychological distress, depression, and suicide, compared to the general population. However, research indicates that farmers may be reluctant to seek mental health support services, due to distrust of mental health professionals, disbelief that the services available to them will be helpful, and adopting traditional gender roles that encourage male farmers to 'mask' their anxiety and depression. Due to this, tailored programs designed by farmers and ranchers themselves are needed in order to effectively target their specific mental health needs and concerns. Three patient family partners who are Saskatchewan-based farmers/ranchers are passionate about making changes to this health priority. They have co-led an interdisciplinary team to identify their own research priorities and design their own study. Funded through a Sprout Grant, the patient family partners will co-lead the research process to: (1) determine what Saskatchewan farmers and ranchers require for mental health supports; (2) gain a greater understanding of 'farm culture'; (3) use this knowledge to develop effective mental health supports that are tailored towards Saskatchewan farmers and ranchers; and (4) educate mental health professionals on farm culture and how to best support this demographic group. This project is currently awaiting ethical approval. 


Working together to Achieve Better Care, Better Health for newcomers to Regina Saskatchewan.

Neelu Sachdev (Principal Investigator), Kirandeep Bhullar (Assistant Investigator), Dr. Rajani Suthar (Assistant Investigator), Jan Pyle (Assistant Investigator), Denise Babcock (Assistant Investigator).

Project background: Immigration affects men and women differently and may be shaped by the cultural practices of the country of origins. Changes in gender roles, cultural norms and economic needs, following immigration, women might have to assume additional social responsibilities at the expense of their own life priorities. Cultural norms and experience with the healthcare system in the country of origin influences newcomer women's health seeking behavior and acceptability of available healthcare services. Access to healthcare can be challenging especially for women dependent on others for transportation, childcare and language assistance. Stigma associated with mental health and lack of health literacy can influence women's access to and utilization of such services. Some of the current challenges that new immigrant women face are lack of information about the existing healthcare services and ways to access those. Further women with language barriers are more likely to delay healthcare access and experience difficulty following treatment plans. Individuals' confidentiality especially with issues related to mental health, women health etc. can be compromised when family members serve as medical translators. There is need to promote health and mental health literacy among newcomers to enhance utilization of existing healthcare services to maintain good health and mental well being. There is need to enhance cultural competencies among healthcare providers to ensure that they comprehend the impacts of culture beliefs and practices on health care utilization and health outcomes and attempt to integrate it where applicable and feasible.      We look forward to working collaboratively with multi-disciplinary and multi-sectoral teams interested in health topics related to newcomers. Effective strategies can be developed to improve access to existing healthcare services, support those with language barrier and deliver culturally responsive care by meaningfully engaging community organization, patients, family advocates in health research.     


Just Ask One Question: Patient Experience Surveying in Acute Inpatient Care

Tom Martin (Quality and Strategy Specialist - Accountable Care Units), Paula Kirk (Patient Family Advisor), Don Anderson (Patient Family Advisor)

Project background: Traditionally, patients are asked to complete a questionnaire asking a series of questions about their experience during their most recent hospital stay either as they are leaving the hospital or after they have been home for several days or weeks. The Institute for Healthcare Improvement Open School members and leaders initiated the Ask One Question project and a small team of health care leaders and Patient Family Advisors (PFAs) adopted similar methods and implemented a replica of the project at the Pasqua Hospital in Regina. From June 2019 to March 2020, the project had PFAs improving care at the bedside by asking a simple question: "How can I improve your stay today?" Using the Model for Improvement PFAs interviewed over 100 patients. A content analysis of those responses identified over 30 issues across 4 broad areas for improvement, including communication issues (e.g., lack of information provided), access to service (e.g., limited availability), environmental factors (e.g., meals), and care delivery (e.g., responsiveness). A PFA, a front line clinician, or hospital administrations could act on these issues. Actions ranged from attending to simple tasks (e.g., moving a food tray closer so patient can eat) or basic care needs (e.g., getting water) to suggestions requiring wider institutional change. The Ask One Question reflected good manners and is a demonstrable competency of patient-centred care. It is a vehicle for engaging PFAs to become involved in the improvement of our healthcare system and initiate relevant actions to improve the patient experience at the bedside.