About

Health care leaders from rural and northern communities are focusing on access to quality care with innovative responses to meet the unprecedented challenges we are experiencing. Unique workforce approaches, effective leveraging of digital technologies, attention to the social determinants of health, and new integrative care models are enabling rural providers to improve the health of their communities. Success is being driven by inspired leadership, forward-thinking governance, and resilient clinicians and staff.

The Canadian Conference on Rural & Northern Health Care brings together top practitioners and thinkers to share strategies and resources for accelerating the shift to a more integrated and sustainable rural health system. We’ll examine the most significant operational and clinical challenges and present innovative approaches that will enable you to transform your organization’s care delivery model and business practices.

Who is this conference for?

Rural Hospital CEOs | Administrators | Senior Executives
System Leaders | Governing Board Members | Nursing and Physician Executives
Public Health and Community Leaders
Executives of Rural Health Care Associations | Networks and Clinics

Canada’s Rural and northern health communities reflect and amplify the greatest challenges facing our health system today. Chief among these challenges is the continuing dramatic inequity in health between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people in Canada.

Adalsteinn D. Brown, Dean Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto

Why should you attend?

1. GET INSIGHTS

into other organizations’ successes and challenges.

 

2. SHARE

information with your peers about your resources, challenges, and ideas to strengthen the rural and northern health care sector.

 

3. CONNECT

with experts in this field. Make new contacts and discover new opportunities.

Past Agenda

All times below are Eastern Time
02:30 PM – 03:00 PM
Log In


Marilee Nowgesic
CEO
Canadian Indigenous Nurses Association


Steph Ouellet
VP Strategic Partnerships
Middlesex Hospital Alliance


Lori Webel-Edgar
Senior Healthcare Risk Management Specialist
HIROC

Pre-recorded message from the Ontario Minister of Health and Long-Term Care.


Christine Elliott
Deputy Premier
Ontario Minister of Health and Long-Term Care
Government of Ontario

Rural and northern health care providers are focused on providing the highest quality of care to their patients. Yet successfully executing on this mission is fraught with challenges.

Take advantage of some key insights Red Lake Hospital has learned over the past few years.

Key Session Takeaways Include:

  • Listen first: promoting safety for Indigenous Patients to share their stories about healthcare experiences
  • Walk together: partnering with Indigenous Agencies, Patients and Elders to develop customized and culturally appropriate solutions for Indigenous communities
  • Keep going: committing to long-term continuous improvement


Sue LeBeau
RN, MScN, MBA, CHE
President and CEO
Red Lake Hospital

Moderated by:

Marilee Nowgesic
CEO
Canadian Indigenous Nurses Association

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought to light the pervasiveness of mental health challenges across Canada. As such, community-based mental health and wellness initiatives are being prioritized. As part of the First Nations Wellness Initiative, CAMH is working with First Nations communities to support the development of wellness strategies that are community-driven and strengths-based. This session will describe the First Nations Wellness Initiative, a collaborative approach to learning about community challenges and strengths, sharing the findings and local knowledge, and using these rich data sources to inform the development of community wellness strategies.

Key Session Takeaways Include:

  • Prioritize community engagement and ethical conduct of research
  • Use of participatory action, community-driven and strengths-based approaches
  • Prioritize and amplify the voices of people with lived experiences
  • Promote community capacity building


Samantha Wells, Ph.D.
She/Her
Senior Director, Institute for Mental Health Policy Research, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH)
Associate Professor, Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto
Associate Professor, Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto
Adjunct Associate Professor, Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Western University
Adjunct Associate Professor, School of Psychology, Deakin University, Australia


Ningwakwe George
Research Coordinator, First Nations Wellness Initiative
Knowledge Holder and Community Elder, Member of the Saugeen First Nation

Moderated by:

Lori Webel-Edgar
Senior Healthcare Risk Management Specialist
HIROC

Access to health care when and where people need it is an ongoing challenge for our rural and northern communities. Inter-professional primary health care teams are working to address this by helping patients receive the care they need in their homes and communities.

Join Erik Sande, President of Medavie Health Services and Matthew Crossman, VP, Operations, Medavie Health Services to explore mobile integrated health – a highly relevant, adaptive strategy that enables mobile medical care in a community to ease emergency department visits, reduce hospital admissions, and expand long-term care options for vulnerable and underserved populations.

By effectively moving care into the community in rural and northern regions, it will help ensure a stronger future for the health of populations, aligned with better outcomes, better patient satisfaction, improved provider experience and better cost effectiveness.


Erik Sande
President
Medavie Health Services


Matthew Crossman
Vice President, Operations
Medavie Health Services

Moderated by:

Steph Ouellet
VP Strategic Partnerships
Middlesex Hospital Alliance

Register by February 10 to receive your mixology kit.

A mocktail or cocktail-making class is a great way to meet new people. It can spark creativity and conversations. Learn how to mix, shake, stir, and pour an amazing alcoholic or non-alcoholic cocktail while connecting with fellow attendees!

Moderated by:

Steph Ouellet
VP Strategic Partnerships
Middlesex Hospital Alliance

08:30 AM – 09:00 AM
Log In

Digital health might be the largest untapped clinical quality improvement resource available to us. Far beyond just technological tools and their associated impacts, digital clinical transformation is about transforming care. Many health care providers quickly adapted to digital health care tools as a safety measure during the pandemic, however, many still struggle to seamlessly incorporate digital health care experiences. And while in-person care has safely resumed for most providers, the reality is digital health care will remain a necessary part of service delivery, particularly for rural and northern communities.

The North Bay Regional Health Centre recently completed a large-scale technologically complex system implementation, including regional integration, and will share some strategies and lessons learned.

Key Session Takeaways Include:

  • The role of technology in delivering shared services across regions
  • The need to fix processes before building out the systems in order to avoid incorporating dysfunctional processes
  • The importance of connecting all provincial healthcare assets
  • What next steps are taking hold, and where will they lead us?


Paul Heinrich
CHE, LLM, C.Dir., CPA, CMA, MEd, BBA
CEO
North Bay Regional Health Centre

Moderated by:

Marilee Nowgesic
CEO
Canadian Indigenous Nurses Association

Every jurisdiction in Canada is facing challenges with attracting and maintaining key staff. There are shortages of nurses, doctors, and specialists across the country, but the shortages are particularly troublesome in rural and northern communities.

Take advantage of this special panel as we explore the successes and challenges of providing care to rural and northern communities. We tackle some of the current models, and how new research is exposing evidence-based insights and rethinking possible care models.

Key Session Takeaways Include:

  • What new research is revealing about quality care in fly-in communities
  • How nurse centric communities with fly-in doctors compare with single doctor communities
  • Why a hub and spoke community health care model can better serve rural and remote communities and improve recruitment and retention
  • How to tailor your message for finding the right candidate for your area
  • Best practices in creating an onboarding program that educates candidates on the cultural expectations of patients


Maria Mathews
Professor, Department of Family Medicine, Department of Epidemiology & Biostatistics
Western University’s Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry
Theme Leader, Canadian Health Force Network

Moderated by:

Diana Urajnik
Research Director
Centre for Rural and Northern Health Care
Professor, Laurentian University

For many rural and northern patients, access to care often means they must be flown out of their community to receive care, then flown back for ongoing care in their community. To effectively provide care for remote patients, a great deal of coordination must take place, built on interinstitutional and interprovincial relationships.

As such, the Society of Rural Physicians of Canada has published a call to action and statement of standards for patient transfers.

Key Session Takeaways Include:

  • What the research is showing for establishing new processes and partnerships to facilitate efficient and equitable patient transfer
  • Best practices on negotiating patient transfers from both the receiving and transferring hospitals
  • Successful coordination strategies to overcome difficult settings, including large geographical distances, and extreme weather
  • Determine how the increasing role of technology to connect with remote care units and patients is delivering timely care and limiting the need for transfers


Dr. C. Ruth Wilson
C.M., M.D., C.C.F.P., F.C.F.P., LL.D
Professor Emerita, Department of Family Medicine
Queen’s University
Family Physician, Yellowknife

Moderated by:

Steph Ouellet
VP Strategic Partnerships
Middlesex Hospital Alliance

10:30 AM - 10:45 AM
Break

The COVID-19 pandemic has disproportionately impacted First Nations, Inuit, Métis and northern communities in Canada placing an enormous burden on healthcare providers, administrators and leaders. As leaders across the system have come together in the collective fight against COVID-19, there have been silver linings in the form of strengthened relationships and emerging opportunities and innovations.

As we continue our collective journey through the pandemic, Healthcare Excellence Canada (HEC), is committed to supporting improved access to high quality, culturally safe and equitable care across health systems in Canada, particularly in First Nations, Inuit, Métis and northern communities. Through partnerships including the Canadian Northern and Remote Health Network, First Nations Health Leadership Network and the Promoting Life Together (PLT) Collaborative, HEC strives to support capacity development, networking and learning opportunities for First Nations, Inuit, Métis and northern healthcare leaders.

Partnerships such as these form the foundation for the work of HEC, including the design, development, and implementation of our efforts to support improved cultural safety and address the systemic racism experienced by First Nations, Inuit, and Métis in healthcare systems. Through this panel presentation, learn more about the relationships which have guided the work of HEC in First Nations, Inuit, Métis and northern health, and opportunities to build on the silver linings emerging through the pandemic as we journey together towards high quality, culturally safe and equitable care.

Learning objectives:

  • Understand the importance of relationships as the foundation for work to support First Nations, Inuit, Métis and Northern health
  • Identify opportunities to build on the silver linings emerging through the pandemic through efforts to support First Nations, Inuit, Métis and northern health leaders’ capacity, and improved cultural safety in healthcare systems


Maria Judd
Vice-President, Strategic Initiatives and Engagement
Healthcare Excellence Canada


Helga Bryant
RN, BScN, MScA
Chief Executive Officer
Northern Regional Health Authority


Nicole Robinson
Director, Northern and Indigenous Health
Healthcare Excellence Canada

Moderated by:

Lori Webel-Edgar
Senior Healthcare Risk Management Specialist
HIROC

Frontline rural physicians in Canada are vulnerable to the psychological impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, especially considering their high pre-pandemic burnout rates compared to their urban counterparts. This qualitative research identified the mental health impacts and any associated stressors faced by rural physicians of Ontario to guide the future development of rural physician wellness supports and policy-making as part of Canada’s pandemic recovery and preparedness plans.

Key Session Takeaways Include:

  • The mental health impacts on rural physicians and the key stressors involved
  • The researcher’s recommendations to help improve the mental health of rural physicians
  • Identify ways to implement changes in their respective organizations to support rural physicians


Anchaleena Mandal
She/Her
MD Candidate 2023, School of Medicine
Queen’s University


Dr. Sarah Gower
Queen’s University


Eva Purkey
She/Her
MD, MPH, CCFP, FCFP
Assistant Professor, Health Equity/Global Health Director
Associate Research Director, Department of Family Medicine
Queen’s University

Moderated by:

Marilee Nowgesic
CEO
Canadian Indigenous Nurses Association

Taking into account the need to bring together human services such as housing, social services and early year within the health care system, the Kenora District Services Board and the All Nations Health Partners have partnered to integrate systems and bring together the traditional medicines of Indigenous people with modern medicines in order to create a more equitable and accessible health care system.

Key Session Takeaways Include:

  • The Ontario Health Team’s models work well with northern regions by allowing communities to look at and change how people access health
  • Human Services and Health Care Systems need to come together and work in an integrated manner, and establish holistic determinates of health
  • Physician support is essential, especially in rural and northern communities


Henry Wall
CAO
Kenora District Services Board


Colleen Neil
Executive Lead, All Nations Health Partners Ontario Health Team
Executive Director, Sunset Country Family Health Team

Moderated by:

Nicole Robinson
Director, Northern and Indigenous Health
Healthcare Excellence Canada


Terrence Sooley
Director of Conference Production & Development
Spark Conferences

Enjoy your lunch with some musical accompaniment or in dedicated networking rooms with fellow attendees.

Session delivered via Zoom video conference.

Suicide is a continuing issue among young people, but it is particularly concerning among indigenous peoples. To address this, the indigenous communities have developed their successful response based on an indigenous worldview, one that promotes a mental health continuum framework, and that also includes longevity.

Key Session Takeaways Include:

  • What a life promotion tool kit entails, its rationale and its impact
  • Why a paradigm shift to life promotion has proven to be successful and adaptable across diverse populations
  • Understanding of the resources available and where you can get more information
  • Lessons learned and success stories


Dr. Ed Connors
Advisory Co-Lead
Wise Practices

Moderated by:

Marilee Nowgesic
CEO
Canadian Indigenous Nurses Association

With limited resources for both specialist care and diagnostic technology, most rural and northern communities rely on key partnerships to fulfill their health care needs. And while this is a difficult challenge, it is nonetheless a common occurrence.

From physicians, surgeons and psychiatrists to physiotherapists and mental health therapists, rural and northern communities are accustomed to experts flying in to fill gaps in their services.

Some of our most remarkable success stories involve exceptional partnerships. Join this discussion of some of those successes, and how you can expand on your partnership programs.

Key Session Takeaways Include:

  • What makes a profitable partnership work, and how do you expand on it to each other’s benefit?
  • How do you work efficiently and effectively with patients and care providers to facilitate and coordinate care?
  • Where do we see partnerships going in the near and long term? How will these partnerships be structured?
  • Relationship building with indigenous partners and patients


Treena Greene
Regional Indigenous Cancer Medical Lead
The Ottawa Hospital


Stephanie Beadle
Neurorehabilitation Clinic, Prosthetic & Orthotic Clinic
Grand River Hospital, Freeport Campus

Moderated by:

Steph Ouellet
VP Strategic Partnerships
Middlesex Hospital Alliance

Rural and Northern populations and conditions are differ from urban populations, and so are their needs. Successful community-research partnerships can provide insight into how to structure evaluation activities that yields knowledge relevant to northern populations.

Drawing on patient-oriented research and health care, we will explore features of community-research partnerships that may optimize capacity-building and improved patient outcomes.

Key Session Takeaways Include:

  • Successful characteristics of community-research partnerships within a northern and rural context
  • Ways in which an academic centre has leveraged support and structures to address organization, health care need


Diana Urajnik
Research Director
Centre for Rural and Northern Health Care
Professor, Laurentian University


Robert Barnett
OHT Impact Fellow, Muskoka and Area Ontario Health Team
Senior Research Associate, Centre for Rural and Northern Health Research

Moderated by:

Lori Webel-Edgar
Senior Healthcare Risk Management Specialist
HIROC

Palliative care is an essential component of the continuum of care and our health care system. However, delivering high-quality care in rural and northern communities need not be as difficult as imagined. Although delivering care to rural and remote locations can be challenging, some resources and approaches can help you meet challenges.

Join in the discussion as we explore how your peer organizations are providing palliative care in their communities.

Key Session Takeaways Include:

  • Approaches and resources for delivering care in rural and remote communities
  • Delivering palliative care services with paramedics
  • Providing culturally appropriate palliative services to Indigenous peoples


Dr. Cornelius J. Woelk
MD, CCFP(PC), FCFP
Medical Director, Palliative Care, Southern Health-Santé Sud
Medical Director, Boundary Trails Regional Cancer Program hub
Assistant Professor, Dept of Family Medicine, University of Manitoba
Family Physician, C.W. Wiebe Medical Centre


Holly Prince
HBSW, MSW, (PhD. Cand.)
2019 Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation Scholar
2018 SSHRC Joseph-Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Scholar
Project Manager, Centre for Education and Research on Aging & Health
Lakehead University


Cheryl Cameron
MEd, ACP
Director of Operations
Virtual Hospice

Moderated by:

Steph Ouellet
VP Strategic Partnerships
Middlesex Hospital Alliance


Marilee Nowgesic
CEO
Canadian Indigenous Nurses Association


Steph Ouellet
VP Strategic Partnerships
Middlesex Hospital Alliance


Lori Webel-Edgar
Senior Healthcare Risk Management Specialist
HIROC

03:00 PM
Conference Adjourns

Save the Date

MARCH 02 – 03, 2022

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Online Tickets

Tickets
Online Ticket
$539
  • Access to all conference sessions online
  • Network with delegates online (microphone and camera required)
  • Access to speaker presentations
  • Access to all sessions on-demand after the conference
  • Access to all previous conference on-demand sessions
Register
Online Groups
$485
  • Access to all conference sessions online
  • Network with delegates online (microphone and camera required)
  • Access to speaker presentations
  • Access to all sessions on-demand after the conference
  • Access to all previous conference on-demand sessions
Register

All registration prices listed are for health care and government professionals.

Attention Vendors/Suppliers:

to register for the event, please contact us at info@sparkconferences.com.

Attention Students:

Special rates for in-person and online events are available for anyone pursuing a career in the health care industry.
Contact us at info@sparkconferences.com to receive your registration code.

Ongoing Call for Speakers

This is your opportunity to share your knowledge and experience with other health care professionals.

Please email us at info@sparkconferences.com to receive more information.

We look forward to receiving your submissions throughout the year!

Past Speakers

Steph Ouellet

VP Strategic Partnerships
Middlesex Hospital Alliance

Marilee Nowgesic

CEO
Canadian Indigenous Nurses Association

    Lori Webel-Edgar

    Senior Healthcare Risk Management Specialist
    HIROC

      Sue LeBeau

      RN, MScN, MBA, CHE
      President and CEO
      Red Lake Hospital

        Ningwakwe George

        Research Coordinator, First Nations Wellness Initiative
        Knowledge Holder and Community Elder, Member of the Saugeen First Nation

          Paul Heinrich

          CHE, LLM, C.Dir., CPA, CMA, MEd, BBA
          CEO
          North Bay Regional Health Centre

            Maria Mathews

            Professor, Department of Family Medicine, Department of Epidemiology & Biostatistics
            Western University’s Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry
            Theme Leader, Canadian Health Force Network

              Dr. C. Ruth Wilson

              C.M., M.D., C.C.F.P., F.C.F.P., LL.D
              Professor Emerita, Department of Family Medicine
              Queen’s University
              Family Physician, Yellowknife

                Anchaleena Mandal

                (She/Her)
                MD Candidate 2023, School of Medicine
                Queen’s University

                  Dr. Sarah Gower

                  she/her
                  Rural Family Doctor, Obstetrics, MSc Epi.
                  Chair, Maternal & Newborn Care
                  Society of Rural Physicians of Canada

                    Dr. Ed Connors

                    Advisory Co-Lead
                    Wise Practices

                      Treena Greene

                      Regional Indigenous Cancer Medical Lead
                      The Ottawa Hospital

                        Stephanie Beadle

                        Neurorehabilitation Clinic, Prosthetic & Orthotic Clinic
                        Grand River Hospital, Freeport Campus

                          Diana Urajnik

                          Research Director
                          Centre for Rural and Northern Health Care
                          Professor
                          Laurentian University

                            Holly Prince

                            HBSW, MSW, (PhD. Cand.)
                            2019 Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation Scholar
                            2018 SSHRC Joseph-Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Scholar
                            Project Manager, Centre for Education and Research on Aging & Health
                            Lakehead University

                              Henry Wall

                              CAO
                              Kenora District Services Board

                                Cheryl Cameron

                                MEd, ACP
                                Director of Operations
                                Virtual Hospice

                                  Eva Purkey

                                  She/Her
                                  MD, MPH, CCFP, FCFP
                                  Assistant Professor, Health Equity/Global Health Director
                                  Associate Research Director, Department of Family Medicine
                                  Queen's University

                                    Christine Elliott

                                    Deputy Premier
                                    Ontario Minister of Health and Long-Term Care
                                    Government of Ontario

                                      Samantha Wells, Ph.D.

                                      She/Her
                                      Senior Director, Institute for Mental Health Policy Research, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH)
                                      Associate Professor, Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto
                                      Associate Professor, Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto
                                      Adjunct Associate Professor, Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Western University
                                      Adjunct Associate Professor, School of Psychology, Deakin University, Australia

                                        Dr. Cornelius J. Woelk

                                        MD, CCFP(PC), FCFP
                                        Medical Director, Palliative Care, Southern Health-Santé Sud
                                        Medical Director, Boundary Trails Regional Cancer Program Hub
                                        Assistant Professor, Dept of Family Medicine, University of Manitoba
                                        Family Physician, C.W.Wiebe Medical Centre

                                          Maria Judd

                                          Vice-President, Strategic Initiatives and Engagement
                                          Healthcare Excellence Canada

                                            Nicole Robinson

                                            Director, Northern and Indigenous Health
                                            Healthcare Excellence Canada

                                              Erik Sande

                                              President
                                              Medavie Health Services

                                                Matthew Crossman

                                                Vice President, Operations
                                                Medavie Health Services

                                                  Colleen Neil

                                                  Executive Lead
                                                  All Nations Health Partners Ontario Health Team
                                                  Executive Director
                                                  Sunset Country Family Health Team

                                                    Helga Bryant

                                                    RN, BScN, MScA
                                                    Chief Executive Officer
                                                    Northern Regional Health Authority

                                                      Robert Barnett

                                                      OHT Impact Fellow, Muskoka and Area Ontario Health Team
                                                      Senior Research Associate, Centre for Rural and Northern Health Research

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                                                        1. Please note that some sessions may not be available.
                                                        2. Sharing these recordings either by audio or video is not permitted. Speaker permission must be obtained for use of presentation content in any form.

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                                                        Attendance at this program entitles certified Canadian College of Health Leaders members (CHE / Fellow) to 4 Category II credits towards their maintenance of certification requirement.

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                                                        Location

                                                        Sheraton Toronto Airport Hotel & Conference Centre
                                                        801 Dixon Road, Toronto, ON, M9W 1J5

                                                        Accommodations

                                                        Room rates are $159.00 + taxes, for a single or double occupancy room.

                                                        To make reservations please call Marriott directly at 1 (866) 932-7058.
                                                        You must identify yourself as being with
                                                        Spark Conferences in order to qualify for your group rate.

                                                        Cutoff date for these rates is Wednesday, February 2, 2022.  Any reservations after this date will be on a space and rate available basis.

                                                        Visit marriott.com to find more info on rooms and COVID-19 protocols.

                                                        Hotel Parking

                                                        On-site parking, fee: $6 CAD hourly, $28 CAD daily

                                                        Travelling from the Airport?

                                                        The hotel offers a complimentary airport shuttle service.
                                                        To book it, please call the shuttle phone at +1 416 675 6100.

                                                        Flights

                                                        For your convenience, here are the websites for different airlines where you can book your flights:

                                                        Air Canada
                                                        West Jet
                                                        Porter Airlines

                                                        Hosting an event at the BMO Education & Conference Centre allows us to give back, as revenues that are generated by the BMO Education & Conference Centre are reinvested back into the hospital to support both Education and Clinical Care.

                                                        Accommodations

                                                        For a map of hotels in the area click here.

                                                        Location

                                                        Go to: https://sparkconferences.com/rural/hub/

                                                        The password details were provided to all registered delegates by email. If you have any questions please reach out to info@sparkconferences.com.