News at Medicine - June 2012 - Quality Healthcare Scholarships awarded

Quality Healthcare Scholarships awarded
June 11, 2012
Patti McCarthy, PhD candidate and a curriculum development assistant in the Faculty of Medicine, has been awarded one of the first two inaugural Quality Healthcare Scholarships from Eastern Health. Sheila Marchant-Short, a nurse and clinical leader with Eastern Health’s Quality and Risk Department, also received a scholarship.

These new scholarships were established to promote the study of key themes identified during the Commission of Inquiry on Hormone Receptor Testing.

The scholarships, valued at $6,500 each, were presented June 7. They were established as part of the settlement agreement of the class action suit on estrogen and progesterone receptor (ER/PR) testing and implemented in consultation with the class action members.

One of the scholarships is designated for a nurse who is pursuing additional studies, while the other is open to all post-secondary students pursuing education in health-related disciplines. The studies of both individuals must align with the themes of quality processes in patient care, disclosure practices, ethics, communication, laboratory sciences and information management.

“The events that led to the Cameron Inquiry and the class action suit have taught us many things, particularly the need for vigilance in our quality processes and appropriate disclosure practices when things go wrong,” said Vickie Kaminski, president and CEO, Eastern Health. “Quality and safety is a priority of our Strategic Plan and these scholarships will transform research into action on the frontlines of health care, where it will have the most impact.”

Ms. McCarthy is currently completing a doctor of philosophy in education at Memorial, with a focus on medical (physician) education and patient safety. More specifically, her PhD work focuses on the development of a tool to assess patient safety competencies. This tool will serve to provide feedback to the learner and preceptors as the learner progresses through their program, and therefor direct their learning in this area. Ms. Marchant-Short is also in a PhD program at Memorial; her dissertation proposal considers the impact of adverse events on healthcare providers and the ongoing quality of client care. 

“Eastern Health is committed to research and the transfer of knowledge among our employees and throughout the organization and beyond,” said Katherine Chubbs, Eastern Health Vice President and Chief Nursing Officer. “Our breast cancer patients felt the primary impact of the issues around hormone receptor testing and our frontline employees were deeply affected as well. These scholarships will allow the recipients to tackle those issues directly, improve process and ultimately enhance the health care we provide.”

The winners of the Quality Healthcare Scholarships will be able to use the funds awarded, at their own discretion, over the duration of their academic program to best meet their educational needs.   

Katherine Chubbs, Patti McCarthy and Vickie Kaminski.