Members of Organizations for Health Action (HEAL) welcome the release today of the final report of the Advisory Panel on Healthcare Innovation chaired by Dr. David Naylor.

HEAL, which represents approximately 650,000 health-care providers and Canada’s top health organizations, is always ready to shine a spotlight on innovations that can improve the health of Canadians and the cost-effectiveness of service delivery.

In 2014, HEAL released its Consensus Statement -- The Canadian Way: Accelerating Innovation and Improving Health System Performance-- and highlighted the pivotal role of innovation in addressing challenges to the sustainability of our national health-care system. In fact, the innovation theme inspired the two-year process that produced this consensus within the health sector.

HEAL believes that the federal government can play a transformational role, working in strategic partnership with the provinces and territories when it comes to accelerating the spread of evidence-based innovations that provide better health, better care and better value for all.

To assist with the spread of proven innovations that would improve health outcomes and overall system performance, HEAL recommends that the federal government introduce a time-limited fund – a National Health Innovation Fund – that is strategically focused in three priority areas, each with specific goals in mind:

  1. Primary Health Care –accelerate the implementation of evidence-based, community-based primary health care, with inter-professional delivery models at the local level.

  1. Mental Health and Addictions –target resources to specific outcome-­based provincial and territorial programs to improve access to evidence-based, inter-professional mental health services and community supports.
  1. Health Human Resources –create a Health Human Resources organization that promotes inter-provincial and territorial discussion on leading practice and the sharing of policies, perspectives and information to improve the way the health and education system manages the supply, mix and distribution of health providers, including leadership development and continuing education.

The Canadian Way also argues for the adoption of a common set of national performance indicators so Canada can evaluate whether health innovations are actually working. HEAL is also a proponent of the Triple Aim performance framework developed by the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI).

In the coming weeks, HEAL will review the Advisory Panel’s Report with a view to calling on the federal government to demonstrate its natural and appropriate leadership and work collaboratively with other governments to find lasting, sustainable solutions for Canada’s health-care challenges.