New project to improve access to palliative care services

Kingston team chosen as one of 10 across Canada to participate in EXTRA program
April 27, 2016 - Kingston, ON – A Kingston team made up of representatives from Providence Care, Kingston General Hospital and the South East Community Care Access Center will soon begin work to improve access to palliative care services for patients in southeastern Ontario. The team is one of 10 from across the country chosen to participate in the Canadian Foundation for Healthcare Improvement’s (CFHI) 2016-17 EXTRA Program. For more than a decade, the EXTRA program has supported 338 healthcare professionals from 134 organizations who have undertaken 211 healthcare improvement projects.

Over the next 14 months the Kingston team will work to establish a centralized intake system for patients who require palliative care services. The aim is to improve access to this important clinical support for patients with a life-limiting illness. 

“We are excited to be working with our partners to ‎build on our local resources and improve patient and family access to the full range of palliative care services available in Kingston,” says Cathy Szabo, President and CEO of Providence Care. “We recognize that this is a very difficult time in a patient’s care journey. So, we are committed to designing a system with input from patients and families themselves, to ensure that we meet their needs.”

During the EXTRA program, the Kingston team will design, implement and evaluate this project with a goal of creating a system that will ensure timely access to high quality care.

“Our vision is to develop integrated pathways and care plans along with the centralized intake for patients,” Brenda Carter, Vice-President, Cancer Services, Kingston General Hospital. “This work will enable patients and families to have seamless access to palliative care in the right place, at the right time to improve their quality of life.”

The submission that was accepted by the EXTRA program was a joint effort that also included input and support from the Queen’s Division of Palliative Medicine, Hospice Kingston and the South East Local Health Integration Network.

“We look forward to starting this important work together to improve access to palliative care services in our region,” said Laurie French, Senior Manager Clinical Support & Utilization at the South East Community Care Access Centre.


Media Contacts:

Jenn Goodwin, Sr. Director, Community Relations & Strategy Providence Care, 613-329-0829,

John Pereira, Strategic Communications Advisor, Kingston General Hospital, 613-549-6666 ext. 6875,



Providence Care is southeastern Ontario’s leading provider of specialized mental health care, physical medicine and rehabilitation, specialized geriatric services, complex continuing care, palliative care and long-term care. Affiliated with Queen’s University in Kingston, and as a member of the Council of Academic Hospitals of Ontario, Providence Care is a major centre for health education and research. Providence Care is sponsored by the Catholic Health Corporation of Ontario. In 2011, Providence Care celebrated its 150th anniversary – over 150 years of “enhancing the quality of life” of those we serve.


Community Care Access Centres (CCACs) connect people across Ontario with quality in‐home and community‐based health care. CCACs provide information, access to qualified care providers and community‐based services to help people come home from hospital or live independently at home.


Kingston General Hospital is a community of people dedicated to transforming the patient and family experience through innovative and collaborative approaches to care, knowledge and leadership. As southeastern Ontario’s leading centre for complex-acute and specialty care, and home to the Cancer Centre of Southeastern Ontario, KGH serves almost 500,000 people through its Kingston facility and 24 regional affiliate and satellite sites. Fully affiliated with Queen’s University, KGH is a research and teaching hospital which is home to more than 2,000 health-care learners and more than 180 health researchers. KGH is ranked as one of Canada’s Top 40 Research Hospitals by Research Infosource. To learn more, visit or join the conversation at


The Canadian Foundation for Healthcare Improvement is a not-for-profit organization funded through an agreement with the Government of Canada. The views expressed herein do not necessarily represent the views of the Government of Canada.


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