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Because your voice matters.

Member, Self-Sustaining Quality Improvement Working Group



Commitment: Long-term

Connection method: Virtual

Open to Vancouver Island Region


Volunteer Opportunity
Join us in revolutionizing how quality improvement work is undertaken at Island Heath! If you have a keen eye for finances, a background in law, or a passion for quality improvement work, this may be an excellent opportunity for you!


Lead Organization/Department
Island Health and South Island Facility Engagement Initiative (SIFEI)

Island Health, the South Island Facility Engagement Initiative, and administrators in Medical and Academic Affairs, are striving to create a unique framework for future quality improvement projects. The goal is to make quality improvement projects financially self-sustaining by changing how they are undertaken and to utilize the cost savings from successful projects to fund future projects. Patient partners will be able to collaborate to give their unique insights and perspectives to this work and will help develop a terms of reference for the group as well as creating the new quality improvement framework. The framework will also be trialed as part of this project. Patient partners with legal or financial backgrounds may prove helpful due to the nature of this project; however, this is not a requirement.

Level of Engagement
This opportunity is at the level of collaborate on the spectrum of engagement. The promise to you is that the health care partner will work together with you to formulate solutions and incorporate your advice and recommendations into the decisions to the maximum extent possible.

• Open to patient partners from the Vancouver Island region
• Comfortable working with a small group via Zoom to move a project forward over six to 12 months
• Experience with quality improvement an asset
• Preference for a patient partner in the Victoria area, but this is not a requirement
• Preference for a patient partner with financial or legal background, but this is not a requirement
• Please note:

    • This opportunity is not open to patient partners who are currently employed by Island Health
    • The placement process for this opportunity may include an informal interview between the volunteer and the health care partner.
    • Applicants must have previously attended a PVN orientation session and completed the Volunteer Agreement. If you have not attended an orientation session but you are interested in this opportunity, please contact Charmaine Niebergall directly to see if accommodations may be possible.

• Number of vacancies: 2
• Date/Time: Meetings to be held 2x per month (day and time TBD)
• Location: Virtually over Zoom, with a possibility of in-person meetings in Victoria when safe to do so.
• Commitment: seven months to one year

No out of pocket expenses are anticipated for this engagement opportunity. However, if you meet the eligibility criteria but have concerns about your ability to participate, please contact Charmaine Niebergall to see if support options are available. We are always seeking to better understand and reduce barriers to participation.

Physician groups have noticed gaps in care and inefficiencies in time and resources. Quality improvement is the practice of looking for ways to improve care by addressing these gaps. Health care workers often see areas for improvement but may not feel empowered to make change, nor have the time and resources to do so. At a recent conference one of our members saw a presentation on “gain sharing” where health care workers were encouraged and supported to make changes that made care more efficient and appropriate, and then cost savings from that project were shared back to the originator to be used for further care improvements.

We have since been endorsed at Island Health to move forward with a similar initiative. We want to let care providers move forward with the ideas they have, make it financially rewarding to their group for doing so and allow further projects to occur. Each cycle makes quality improvement more accessible for those departments and staff. We want this to be a safe intervention that empowers change, and makes it more financially feasible for groups to do these projects, and improves the overall patient experience. The working group currently includes the following members:

  • Dr. Jeff Kerrie – Medical Director of Quality, Safety, and Ethics
  • Dr. Jason Wale – Emergency Room Physician
  • Dr. Colin Landells – Orthopedic Surgeon
  • Julia Porter – Facility Engagement Project Support
  • Mark King – Director of Quality, Safety & Improvement
  • Kristine Votova – Director of Medical Staff Quality
  • James Watson – Executive Director of Care Sustainability

For more information on physician engagement aspects of this work, please visit the Facility Engagement webpage.

Health Care Partner Contact Information

Charmaine Niebergall
Engagement Leader, Patient & Public Engagement | Vancouver Island

From Our Community

Laura Parmar

Physician Quality Improvement Coach — Northern Health

Laura Palmer

It has been so rewarding to go from an idea to working with such a great group of dedicated people from so many different organizations towards a very fun and rewarding project. Several extremely engaged PVN members expressed interest in being part of piloting a patient virtual care peer support system. I am confident that this is the beginning of many more exciting collaborations!