CFHI Selects 10 Teams for Flagship EXTRA Program

by Nadine Morris | Apr 14, 2016
Teams will Improve Healthcare for Canadians, with Half Focusing on Palliative Care

Ottawa, Ontario– April 14, 2016 – The Canadian Foundation for Healthcare Improvement (CFHI) today announced the 10 interprofessional teams of healthcare leaders that have been chosen to participate in the 2016-17 EXTRA: Executive Training Program.

The EXTRA program is a 14-month bilingual improvement fellowship – the only one of its kind in Canada. During the intensive program, each participating team designs, implements and evaluates a major quality improvement project that is of strategic value to their organization and region, enhancing patient outcomes, quality of care and cost-effectiveness. Over more than a decade, EXTRA has supported 338 healthcare professionals from 134 organizations who have undertaken 211 improvement projects.

Six of the teams in this EXTRA cohort are from Quebec, and half of the participating teams will focus on palliative care: Centre intégré de santé et de services sociaux de la Montérégie-Ouest in Quebec will develop an approach to better support palliative care in a home setting; Le Centre intégré universitaire de santé et de services sociaux Saguenay-Lac-St-Jean is creating a shared understanding among healthcare professionals of the transition to palliative care based on patient experiences; and the Nova Scotia Health Authority will implement a palliative care approach in primary healthcare settings across the province.

Other projects include Providence Care, Kingston General Hospital and the South East Community Care Access Centre joining forces to establish a centralized intake and registration system for patients who require palliative care services; and The Ottawa Hospital improving patient outcomes and experiences for women who require labour induction when giving birth. Additionally, a team of professionals from the Canadian Armed Forces will revise the protocols they use to determine the health and operational fitness of soldiers who are to be deployed on military missions.

According to the federal Advisory Panel on Healthcare Innovation: “. . . front-line efforts to improve healthcare and augment its value are limited in part by . . . the absence of a cadre of dedicated and expert personnel who can support efforts to initiate and scale up improvements.” EXTRA meets this need by building the capacity of healthcare organizations to achieve, sustain and scale improvements; enhancing the capacity of existing and emerging leaders; and creating a pan-Canadian community of healthcare leaders dedicated to improvement.

Previous EXTRA projects have generated significant improvements in patient care, health outcomes and value-for-money, and the program has served as an incubator for work that is sustained and spread across the country. EXTRA projects led by teams from the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority have reduced the use of antipsychotic medication in long term care facilities and this work has been spread to homes across Canada through CFHI’s Reducing Antipsychotic Medication Use in Long Term Care Collaborative. The EXTRA program is supported by numerous partner organizations. For a full list of partners, please visit CFHI’s website.

Read more about the 2016-17 EXTRA teams and their projects.

Learn about the EXTRA: Executive Training Program.


“Our Government is proud to support the adoption and spread of healthcare innovation through CFHI. In particular, I am pleased to see that half of the teams participating in the EXTRA program will focus on improving palliative care, which is so important to patients and their families. ”

- Hon. Jane Philpott, federal Minister of Health

“Delivering better healthcare for Canadians means building the capacity of professionals and organizations to lead improvement. Through EXTRA: Executive Training Program, teams of healthcare leaders gain these skills while implementing projects in their own organizations that truly provide better patient care, health and value.”

- Maureen O’Neil, O.C., President of CFHI

About CFHI

The Canadian Foundation for Healthcare Improvement identifies proven innovations and accelerates their spread across Canada, improving patient care, the health of Canadians and value-for-money. These innovations could save provincial-territorial healthcare budgets over $1 billion per year. CFHI is a not-for-profit organization funded by Health Canada. Visit for more information.

The views expressed herein do not necessarily represent the views of Health Canada

To arrange media interviews, please contact:
Joel Baglole
Senior Communications Specialist
Canadian Foundation for Healthcare Improvement
C: 613-797-6481