CADTH and Choosing Wisely Canada have convened a group of clinicians, policy experts, and patient advisors to identify actions that health systems can take to improve post-pandemic care for Canadians.
The Expert Panel on Post-Pandemic Care is composed of leaders from across the country who bring a range of experience and perspectives to this work. This includes front-line medical expertise, caregiver and lived experience, policy analysis, quality improvement, and ethics. Together, the expert panel will deliver guidance on how health care systems can optimize resources available to deliver the priority tests and procedures that are most beneficial to patients in the pandemic’s wake.
The COVID-19 pandemic is having a profound impact on Canadian health systems by way of delays and cancellations of non-urgent care, elective procedures, some diagnostic procedures and screening tests, and a significant number of surgeries. Health system leaders are equally worried about the number of patients with illnesses that remain undiagnosed. When health systems begin to reopen and scale up these clinical activities, efforts to reduce wasteful and non-beneficial tests and treatments can, in turn, help make crucial and necessary care available more quickly.
Importantly, this project creates the opportunity to pilot an exploratory conversation with patient representatives, clinicians, and policy makers to identify the medical services and procedures that offer low to no known clinical value, in order to support a clinical focus on delivering high value care when the pandemic recedes.
Choosing Wisely Canada will review its existing evidence-based recommendations with clinician experts and curating an initial short list of low-value treatments. The expert panel will then develop final recommendations for clinicians and decision-makers. Recommendations will be considered for inclusion in the short list if they are:
The results of this work will be presented at Choosing Wisely Canada’s National Meeting in May 2021 and will be published in CADTH’s Canadian Journal of Health Technologies.
“COVID-19 has upended the delivery of health care across the country — we’re unlikely to see a return to business as usual and with that comes the potential to do things differently and better. The renewal of our health systems will be a complex undertaking and a unique opportunity to re-examine what we prioritize. CADTH is honoured to collaborate with Choosing Wisely Canada and the Task Force to develop evidence-informed guidance that can help increase our focus on the care and interventions that provide clear benefits to patients.”
~ Suzanne McGurn, President and CEO, CADTH
“Health care services are facing incredible pressures to address massive backlogs and foregone procedures that will strain an already stretched system. This review, in partnership with CADTH, will provide important foresight into how we ensure limited health care services are directed toward things that add the greatest value for patients and the public. We’re proud that Choosing Wisely Canada recommendations, developed by national clinician societies, are laying the groundwork for this review to inspire change at the system level.”
~ Dr. Wendy Levinson, Chair, Choosing Wisely Canada
CADTH is an independent, not-for-profit agency funded by Canadian federal, provincial, and territorial governments (except Quebec) to provide credible, impartial advice and evidence-based information about the effectiveness of drugs and other health technologies to Canadian health care decision-makers.
Choosing Wisely Canada is the national voice for reducing unnecessary tests and treatments in health care. One of its important functions is to help clinicians and patients engage in conversations that lead to smart and effective care choices. Choosing Wisely Canada is led by a team of clinicians and staff based at St. Michael’s Hospital (Toronto), the University of Toronto, and in collaboration with the Canadian Medical Association.