Prairie Mountain Health (PMH) recently received its national accreditation designation, the second since PMH was formed in 2012. Accreditation Canada affirmed the health region met 93.1% of the overall Qmentum quality improvement program measures and is now accredited until 2024.  

“What it does, is it assesses our current processes, policies and performances against global standards to identify what we’re doing well and in what areas we need to improve on,” explains PMH Regional Lead for Quality, Efficient Safety, and Accreditation, Sandi Allen.   Allen's portfolio also includes Patient Relations and Patient Engagement and Risk Management. 

“So, when folks see that we’re accredited, it gives them confidence that the health-care organization is working hard to meet the global standards of excellence, to deliver safe, high-end quality care, ” she adds. 

Achieving the assessment of 93.1% over-all accreditation status means PMH has excelled in its over-all performance. 

Allen says there are always areas where they can improve on, such as having polices in place, but have yet to incorporate additional checks and balances that have been discussed.  "Sometimes we need to update our policies to reflect new best practices.  For example, suicide prevention; we have a suicide prevention program but it's not in every program and service, it's in only some programs and services, so now we need to broaden our scope and have that available in more programs and services."

Immunization policies is another area where PMH is wanting to improve.  "We have immunization policies, but it may not have been developed with input from patients and families, for example. So that's something that we're working really hard at doing, is including patient and family voice and experience for all of our policies and in all of our reviews."

"We're really trying to do a better job of incorporating their lived experience," continues Allen.  "We can write a policy from our perspective in how this would look and how we need to perform, but the patient in the bed and the patient receiving that care, how does our performance reflect on them? and what is their lived experience? and what is their expectations for us?"

"So, some of our policies need to be updated with those components built into them." she adds.


The final report included the following highlights:  

• The survey team evaluated PMH programs and services against 21 standards sets across 42 locations in multiple programs;  

• The review involved eight surveyors virtually and eight who visited PMH on site from across Canada. During these visits Accreditation Canada surveyors interacted with numerous staff, client and families and observed processes;  

• Surveyors provided positive feedback on Health System Transformation, facility led-developments, Indigenous Health initiatives and a strong ethics framework, to name a few;  

• Aspects that were noted to have impacted PMH operations included COVID and Human Resource challenges;  

• Community partners offered insight on PMH strengths and opportunities for improvement.