Second cohort of physicians complete quality improvement program

Twenty-two physicians from a variety of specialties and Communities of Care celebrated their graduation from the Physician Led Quality Improvement (PLQI) program at an event held earlier this month at the Arbutus Club in Vancouver.

Three of the graduating physicians delivered overviews of their QI projects at the event:

  • Dr. Marla Gordon, Residential Care, Vancouver Community, whose project is aimed at decreasing inappropriate and avoidable transfers from Long Term Care to Emergency
  • Dr. Sam Yip, Neurology, Vancouver Acute, who presented his “Quality Improvement in Stroke Treatment (QUICK)”
  • Dr. Jane Lea, Otolaryngology, PHC,  shared her project to implement Remote Cochlear Implant Programming

Key themes that emerged included the importance of engaging staff early and keeping up with engagement throughout the project, how quality improvement provides a great opportunity to strengthen relationships with other specialties and team members, and how all the hard work of implementing quality improvement pays huge dividends by better addressing challenges and gaps in patient care.

Leaders from across VCH and PHC celebrate with grads

Senior administrators and medical leaders from across VCH and PHC came out to celebrate with program graduates.

The event began with opening remarks by Dr. Kelly Mayson, Regional Medical Director, Quality and Safety, VCH and Chair of PLQI; and Vivian Chan, Director, Medical Quality and Health Authority sponsor of PLQI. These were followed by speeches from Dr. Janet Kow, Senior Medical Director, PHC; Dr. Don Griesdale, Associate VP Medicine, Quality & Safety, VCH; and Dr. Matt Chow, Specialist Services Committee Co-Chair, Doctors of BC. A common theme in these speeches was the importance of working together, across Quality structures, to support physicians’ drive for improvement.

The evening also provided an opportunity for all in attendnce to network and learn more about quality improvement projects being implemented across our organizations.

C​​ongratulations, physicians!

Congratulations to the following physicians who completed the PLQI training and successfully implemented a quality improvement initiative in 2019:


  • Fern von der Porten- Emergency Medicine – Improve feedback to ski and bike patrol re: pre-hospital care through education
  • Nicola Hahn- Physical Medicine & Rehab – Advancing delivery of post-stroke rehabilitation to meet Canadian Best Practice Guidelines
  • Richmond
  • Ashok Krishnamoorthy- Psychiatry – Improving the development of behavior care plans for managing challenging and/or
  • responsive behaviors in clients with Dementia
  • Marilyn Champagne- Psychiatry – Improving access to mental health resources to address child psychiatric concerns, attachment. and parental mental health
  • Matthew Kwok- Emergency medicine – Decrease turnaround time for patients needing X-ray in the emergency department

Vancouver Community

  • Harish Neelakant- Psychiatry – Clozapine Collaborative
  • Joy Masuhara- Geriatric medicine – Increase the proportion of referrals of community based clients of Chinese ethnicity to Community OA MHSU
  • Marla Gordon- Residential Care – Prevent unnecessary hospital transfers from residential care to acute care

Vancouver Acute

  • Allison Mah- Infectious Diseases – Improving identification and recording (through labels) of penicillin allergy in patients at VGH
  • Andrei Krassioukov- Physical medicine & Rehab –To re-examine Risk Assessment form and provide suggestions at the GF Strong Rehabilitation Center to decrease falls and injuries
  • Hussein Kanji- Critical Care Medicine – Improving access and effectiveness in the provincial delivery of extracorporeal life support (ECLS) and Early mobilization of patients in the ICU
  • Michael Nimmo- Laboratory Medicine – Improve appropriateness of autoimmune testing at the VCH Autoimmune Laboratory
  • Penny Tam- Internal Medicine – Evaluate and improve Morbidity & Mortality rounds process
  • Samuel Yip- Neurology – Reducing door to Endo Vascular Thrombectomy time
  • Sophia Wong- Laboratory Medicine – Improving wait times at VGH Outpatient Laboratory through the development of an online appointment booking system
  • Stephen van Gaal- Neurology – Improving quality of hospital discharge summary documentation from Vancouver Stroke Services

Providence Health Care

  • Eileen Wong – General Practice – Improve food quality and choices for Holy Family Extended Care Unit
  • Evan Kwong- Physical medicine & Rehab – Improving access to inpatient stroke rehabilitation at Holy Family Hospital
  • Jane Lea- Otolaryngology – Remote Cochlear Implant Programming: to improve access to hearing health services and Improving Timeliness of Consultations for Patients with Dizziness
  • Ken Kaila- Critical Care Medicine – Improve data collection of pain, agitation, and delirium in Cardiac ICU
  • Queenie Dinh- Infectious Diseases – Improve Outpatient Parenteral Antibiotic Therapy (OPAT) attendance rates through different possible interventions
  • Ruth MacRedmond- Critical Care Medicine – Improve advanced care planning through the use/adaptation of the Serious Illness Conversation Guide

About PLQI

The Physician Led Quality Improvement Program is entering its third year. Through the cohort training program, about 40 physicians will be involved in quality improvement training and projects.

PLQI is a partnership between Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH), Providence Health Care (PHC), and the Specialist Services Committee (SSC) designed to address gaps in quality structures relating to physician participating in QI activities. Check out the Medical Staff Web Site for more information about the program.

The 1-day PLQI training is being offered three times this fall:

  • September 11, 2019
  • October 8,  2019
  • November 13, 2019

​After completing the program, many physicians will continue to pursue QI activities within their sites, and become change agents within their departments, either with continued support from the PLQI program or on their own.

For more information, please contact Rochelle Szeto, Project Coordinator, at

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