Thursday, September 7, 2017

Pincher Creek Emergency Services Commission earns national accreditation

Chris Davis - On September 1 the Pincher Creek Emergency Services Commission (PCESC) received official notice from Accreditation Canada that the commission has earned its accreditation. "We congratulate you on this achievement that demonstrates your organization's determination and commitment to ongoing quality improvement," said Accreditation Canada Account Manager Jessica Peters in a letter to the commission.  "We applaud you leadership, staff and accreditation team members for their efforts and dedication to the provision of safe, quality health services.

According to PCESC Deputy Chief Marg Cox "It's a required process, by AHS, Accreditation Canada is an internationally renowned business. They set out standards for various health services: ambulances, hospitals, nursing homes...  We are required to have policies and procedures in place to ensure patient and staff safety, and that's what it's all about."  Cox said achieving the accreditation was a two year process, working with Accreditation Canada's Qmentum program.  "We made that so now there's four years till they come and check up on us again."

"We were accredited at the primer level two years ago in 2015," 

The process is more involved than anything Pincher Creek Emergency Services went through before the commission was officially established in August of 2015 with the signing of a joint agreement between the Town of Pincher Creek and the Municipal District of Pincher Creek No. 9.  Qmentum used four sets of standards at the core of their accreditation program: governance, leadership, infection prevention and control, and medication management.  According to Cox there was "A lot more training, a lot more policies, a lot more procedures, that kind of thing. Then they send a survey team out, like they did in 2015.  They also go through all our books." Cox said they check staff credentials and training, interview staff to see if it is a safe workplace, and do ride-alongs to make sure procedures are followed. They look into employment practises as well. "All aspects of what we do. It was really good. There were a lot of areas that we were weak in, and it's brought us up, as it should, to a higher standard of patient care, and safety, and staff."

"Yes, we are very pleased. That was a lot of work and it's very stressful, for everybody."

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