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C-QuIPS Director

The Centre for Quality Improvement and Patient Safety (C-QuIPS) has been my academic home for more than a decade. From being the Centre’s inaugural postdoctoral fellow, to a core member and then associate director, I am proud to have contributed to the Centre’s accomplishments over the last ten years. We have seen a rapid expansion in our Centre’s educational offerings and the establishment of C-QuIPS’ reputation nationally and internationally as a leading training and learning centre; our graduates and alumni are now leaders in their own institutions who guide organizational efforts big and small to make care outcomes and experiences for patients in our health system better.

When named Director in early 2020, I was keen to build on this momentum by crafting a renewed strategic vision, extending our reach and deepening our impact for the people and organizations we serve. Nothing could have prepared me – or the world for that matter – for the pandemic. We halted our strategic planning process as we focused our efforts on supporting patients and partners, and flattening the curve to ensure we had sufficient health system capacity and resources to provide necessary care.

The pandemic is now shaping choices made by all public institutions and continuing to test the readiness and resilience of the world’s health systems, including our own. In large measure, we are living in a reactive rather than proactive moment in history and decisions made now will have lasting repercussions. We live in a changed world.

This changed world fundamentally affects the decisions we make at C-QuIPS as we envision our future work. The pandemic has exposed the fragility of our health system which, especially when under duress, fails to provide the quality of care that people deserve and expect. What’s more, this inability to respond to shocks and discontinuities disproportionately impacts the most disadvantaged members of our society. As of November 2020, in Toronto, more than four out of every five COVID-19 cases have occurred among racialized people. Most deaths in Canada due to COVID-19 occurred in frail elderly seniors living in long-term care…


A  D E C A D E  I N  T H E  M A K I N G

The Centre for Quality Improvement and Patient Safety (C-QuIPS) was founded in 2009 as a joint partnership between the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Medicine and two of its major teaching hospitals, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre and the Hospital for Sick Children (‘SickKids’). With the announced renewal of the Centre in 2020, Women’s College Hospital joined as a new funding partner.

Under the leadership of our inaugural Director, Kaveh Shojania, we prioritized capacity building through education, developing programs that equip health care professionals, managers and leaders with the knowledge and skills to develop, execute and evaluate QI projects and lead patient safety initiatives. In a successful 2018 external review, reviewers praised our Centre’s impact, noting “The contributions of C-QuIPS to building QI capacity among physicians and other healthcare providers was almost palpable in the resulting workplace QI cultures.”

While our primary focus was initially on education, C-QuIPS staff and core members have led a variety of impactful research programs, producing papers and obtaining grants in greater numbers than any comparable Canadian centre and on par with prominent international centres.


Click the image below to view our full strategic plan


Everyone striving for better
health outcomes for all


To accelerate and deepen the work of people and organizations that are passionate about enhancing quality and patient safety.

R I S I N G   T O   T H E    M O M E N T


The COVID-19 pandemic has shone a light on numerous issues in our health care system, including a fragility in responding to crises as seen through system-wide shortages and slowdowns, as well as the inequities at the heart of our society that impact health at every level. For this reason, we have chosen to embed two key themes into our strategic plan: health system resilience and health equity. These two themes are woven throughout our goals and objectives, as well as our yearly initiatives, and represent key considerations that guide all that we do.



Health System Resilience

A resilient health system is one that can adapt quickly to changing needs and circumstances, while at the same time focusing on the factors that support improved patient outcomes and provider wellness. We will direct our scholarship, learning and networking efforts to advance initiatives that create health system resilience, such as integrated care, resource stewardship, high reliability and virtual care, among others.


Health Equity

Equity is one of the six core aims of quality, yet it is often overshadowed by other aims such as patient safety. However, cultural safety and patient safety are inextricably linked; a person’s background and identity directly impacts the outcomes they experience. We cannot train current and future health leaders and clinicians in QIPS without addressing these inequities. Our first course of action must be to learn from experts in community and partner organizations who are doing work in this field to gain a deeper understanding of the wide range of health equity issues. Only then can we begin to determine how best to inform our QI research, education and practice with a health equity lens.

C R E A T I N G   I M P A C T


To fully realize our strategic goals and health system impact, we want to strike a better balance across our scholarship, learning and networking activities, and integrate these domains more deliberately to accomplish our goals.


C R I T I C A L   B U I L D I N G   B L O C K S


Our ability to accomplish our goals relies on strategically increasing our funding, building and nurturing a community where QIPS professionals can connect and collaborate, and strengthening existing and new connections with clinical and academic organizations. Our enablers – sustainable and diverse revenues, a community committed to excellence and learning and renewed and extended strategic partnerships – are critical to our success.


and diverse revenues

We aim to deliver a significant return on investment to our member hospitals by providing cost-shared innovations and learning opportunities. Our work is supported by grants, commissioned research and course tuition. Over the next five years, we will fund our growth by doubling earned revenues related to learning, events, research and philanthropy. While doing so, we will strengthen our business model by introducing revenue targets for each of our three domains (scholarship, learning, networks).

A community committed
to excellence and learning

Our culture of collegial inquiry and experimentation is grounded in proven research methods. As an applied research centre, we aspire to be a place where health practitioners and organizations can bring problems and gain the tools, mentorship and resources to solve them. We want our approach to learning and QIPS to be a model replicated by other institutions in Canada and abroad.

Renewed and extended
strategic partnerships

C-QuIPS should be a source of pride for our member hospitals, and an internationally regarded asset working within Ontario’s health system. Over the next five years, we want to strengthen our connections to other international QIPS leaders, to other Canadian academic institutions and health organizations, as well as to community organizations and stakeholder groups that can help us advance our focus on health equity and health system resilience.

T A R G E T S   A N D   M I L E S T O N E S


Our goals reflect our Centre’s sense of urgency, purpose and desire to advance the field and grow our community and seek to express our ambition to make the Centre an indispensable asset that delivers exceptional value to its members and partner organizations.

G O A L  1


C-QuIPS is an extra-departmental research and education unit that exists to positively impact health systems and patient outcomes. Our value proposition extends to our members, alumni and learners, as well as our partner clinical and academic institutions. We strive to ensure that our education programs are relevant and make a difference, and aligned with our partners’ organizational priorities to catalyze change.

For our Centre’s next phase, we will:

  • extend our reach and build our reputation and success on our ability to accelerate change at the health system level
  • create value by moving beyond the microsystem and supporting the application of these innovations at scale in ways that help both health care providers and patients

G O A L  2

the field

C-QuIPS is an applied research body that inspires action with examples of success and ingenuity and advances the field of QIPS by generating and disseminating new knowledge. We enthusiastically engage with the concerns of our partner hospitals, the academic community focused on QIPS, and clinicians, administrators and researchers who are determined to find new and better ways of providing care.

We will:

  • integrate our academic scholarship, learning programs and innovative networks to secure our reputation as an international leader in QIPS
  • increase our ability to share and showcase our work

G O A L  3

Grow our

With the support of our partner hospitals and members, alumni and learners, we believe that our future success depends on increasing the number of people who work with us, while doing more to activate and support our members and alumni. At the same time, we recognize the need for inclusivity and a more diverse range of voices to inform everything we do.

Over the next five years, we will:

  • invest in our community by actively reaching out to and inviting new people with diverse backgrounds to join our team, faculty and programs
  • prioritize networks to foster new ways for members, alumni and learners to connect and collaborate
  • create more opportunities for shared learning and the pursuit of joint research and improvement initiatives


Deliver exceptional value


Maintain international leadership in QI education by establishing novel approaches and designing and implementing impactful QI education programs


Align and integrate QI work with organizational priorities to catalyze change that positively impacts health systems and improves patient outcomes.

Advance the field


Develop, in collaboration with organizational and community partners, an equity framework for QI research, education and practice.


Partner with internal and external groups and organizations to expand a program of research and scholarship.

Grow the community


Establish a quality improvement learning network that fosters connections and collaboration within and across organizations.


Cultivate and nurture a new and diverse generation of QI scholars and leaders.

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