INSPIRED COPD Scale Collaborative

  • Forming Teams
  • Planning Initiative
  • Launch
  • Changes Tested
  • Some Improvement
  • Improvement
  • Significant Improvement
  • Sustainable Improvement

Nearly two million people in Canada live with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)1 , and it is one of the most common reasons people are admitted to hospital.2 COPD is a progressive lung disease that includes chronic bronchitis and emphysema and characterized by breathing difficulty that worsens over time.

Most people, including those with COPD, want to be cared for in the familiarity and comfort of their home and community. Receiving care at home improves the quality of life for patients and dramatically reduces their hospital readmissions.

The INSPIRED COPD Outreach Program™ is a hospital-to-home care model that provides patients with moderate to severe COPD, and their families, the information, tools and support they need to better manage their illness in their home. INSPIRED stands for Implementing a Novel and Supportive Program of Individualized care for patients and families living with Respiratory Disease.

The Canadian Foundation for Healthcare Improvement has implemented two improvement collaboratives to spread and scale INSPIRED-like programs across the country. In the first collaborative, the INSPIRED approach was spread by 19 teams from healthcare organizations in every Canadian province. A subsequent collaborative supported six of those teams to scale the INSPIRED approach to reach even more providers, organizations and patients within their jurisdictions.

How INSPIRED contributes to better healthcare in Canada

INSPIRED shows that providing the services patients, their families and caregivers need to manage COPD in their homes has improved their quality of life, while dramatically reducing hospital readmissions and emergency department visits.

CFHI’s spread collaborative resulted in an 80 percent reduction in hospital admissions (of those 146 participating COPD patients). Prior to participating in INSPIRED, patients in this group experienced 180 hospitalizations. Following the program, the number of their hospitalizations dropped to 33.

The potential savings the INSPIRED approach can offer Canada’s healthcare system are vast. An independent analysis found that expanding the INSPIRED program to all people in Canada with COPD could save $688 million in hospital costs over five years. Put another way, every $1 invested in the program could prevent $21 in hospital-based costs3.

All six teams participating in the INSPIRED scale collaborative collected quantitative and qualitative data to help inform the evaluation of the program. Results and key learnings will be available in 2020. Subscribe to our newsletter to be one of the first to receive the results.

The Approach

The INSPIRED COPD Outreach Program™ was developed by Dr. Graeme Rocker and his colleagues in Halifax, Nova Scotia with extensive input by patients, as well as their families and caregivers. The program gives patients with COPD the information, tools and support they need to better manage their illness at home, including:

  • Written action plans
  • Phone calls after they’re discharged home
  • Education for psychosocial support
  • Advance care planning when they need it
  • A phone number to call for support

A Change Package has been produced together with the Nova Scotia Health Authority and is available for free via CFHI’s Innovations, Tools and Resource repository. It provides an overview of the INSPIRED approach and the key interventions to providing more holistic, accessible, patient-centred care for those living with advanced COPD.


  • 2010

    INSPIRED COPD Outreach Program™
    developed and implemented (Halifax, NS)
  • 2014–2015

    INSPIRED Spread Collaborative
    19 teams from 10 provinces
  • 2017-2019

    INSPIRED 2.0 Scale Collaborative
    6 teams across Canada

The Teams

  • INSPIRED Scale Collaborative Teams (2017 – 2019)

  • INSPIRED Spread Collaborative Teams (2014 – 2015)

INSPIRED Scale Collaborative Final Evaluation Summary Report

Download the Final Evaluation Report

COPD places a huge burden on patients and on the health care system. It’s exciting to have the opportunity to learn from and contribute to a national network focused on improving COPD care.

-Lynn Farrell,
Nova Scotia Health Authority

CFHI’s collaboration enables us to innovate in the way we practice and better meet the growing needs of our population. The implementation of our COPD program is an essential step in our quest for excellence!

-Odette Arseneault,
CISSS de la Montégérie-Est, Quebec

What We Do

Better Care Closer to Home and the Community

Tool / Resource

INSPIRED COPD Outreach Program Change Package: Implementing an INSPIRED Approach to Care for Patients Living with Advanced COPD
Read more >

Improvement Conversation

INSPIRED: Scaling up innovative approaches to COPD care
Read more >

Public Health Agency of Canada. (2018) Report from the Canadian Chronic Disease Surveillance System: Asthma and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) in Canada. Retrieved from 

Canadian Institute of Health Information (2019) Giving birth, lung and heart problems among top reasons for hospitalization. Retrieved from 

Smetanin, P; McNeil, D and Burger, C. Modelling the INSPIRED COPD Outreach Program™ National and Provincial Analysis Final Report. RiskAnalytica, 2016. Retrieved from