FRASER HEALTH DIVERSITY SERVICES – REPORT 2012
REPORT TO THE SOUTH ASIAN COMMUNITY 2011 – 2012
The journey to having a Diversity Service began in 1996 with the development of a Multicultural Health Committee which included representation from staff and the community. Then in 2005, Surrey Memorial Hospital hired a Manager for Diversity Services to develop a comprehensive diversity program for the hospital.
Our young service formally came about in 2010 when Dr. Nigel Murray, CEO for Fraser Health, created a regional Diversity Services portfolio to create new programming and coordinate all of the diversity initiatives within the health authority.
Over the past year Fraser Health Diversity Services crystallized a strategic plan grounded in the values of collaboration, equity, excellence, integrity, respect, and trust. Since inception we have invested in services and programs aimed at improving access to health services and providing care that honours the values, beliefs and practices of individuals in the communities we serve.
Through extensive stakeholder consultations we have also formalized the department’s mission: to increase capacity for diversity-competency within Fraser Health by providing training, advocacy, language services, consulting services, and research for physicians, leaders and staff in order to decrease inequities within the system.
Sharing our work with our community
We want to work with the community to make health services more accessible. In an effort to keep the community informed about our plans and services we are pleased to share a snapshot of the services currently being offered through this community report.
Diversity Services Foci
»We are developing a comprehensive curriculum to teach staff the knowledge, skills and attitudes for providing quality care to people of diverse backgrounds
» In the fiscal year (2011-2012) 1,160 staff have attended various workshops and education sessions
»Education curriculum about the Sikh faith is currently being enhanced through consultations with community members and the World Sikh Organization.
»Ongoing classes are taking place to teach conversational Punjabi to healthcare workers (Introduction to Punjabi for Healthcare Workers)
»We provide Fraser Health staff, physicians, and leaders with advice about Diversity issues pertaining to the workplace and/or patients
»This year we provided 81 internal and 61 external consultations
»We strive to build collaborations and establishing strategic relationships between Fraser Health and the broader community
»We provide information (e.g. referrals to subject matter experts, one-to-one meetings) and advocacy (e.g. addressing health inequities) for individuals who are seeking advice about navigating the health system
Communication and language is a key barrier faced by the immigrant community. Fraser Health has taken steps to overcome this barrier by introducing Interpretation and Translation Services. An example of our commitment to overcome these barriers at Surrey Memorial Hospital is the availability of three full-time Interpreters that speak Punjabi, Hindi, and Urdu. This hospital alone used 15,268 interpreter consults in 47 different languages in 2011! Throughout the region there were 30,000 requests for interpreter consults in 72 languages!!
Other interpreters are available on sites across Fraser Health or through a language line (3-way phone system) that provides access to 160 different languages. Translation services are also available for staff members who wish to have patient education material or signage translated.Research
We have participated in research projects through Diversity Services that have informed ongoing development and improvement of our diversity initiatives:
» Just Scratching the Surface: Mental Health Promotion for Punjabi Seniors (Jarvis, P., Koehn, S., Bains, S., Cheema, J., Goudriaan, D., Addison, M., Final Report, 2011)
»Partners in Care: Understanding Fraser Health’s Diverse Workforce (Survey, 2011)
» Inventory of Services/Programs Provided for the South Asian Population in Fraser Health (Environmental Scan, 2009)
Other Diversity Related Programs
South Asian Health Initiative
Fraser Health recognises the need to lower the burden of chronic diseases among South Asian population. Following a very successful Canada-India Network Initiative on Cardiovascular Health in 2010, Fraser Health has been engaged in developing the South Asian Health Institute (SAHI) to provide a coordinated approach among its various programs. This initiative will provide an opportunity for Fraser to be a global leader in South Asian Health and also to partner with local and international groups. Over the past 2 years, in partnership with the Canada India Network Society and other partners, joint projects have been launched to address key areas that have a major impact on South Asian health. All activity aims to engage and empower the community through education and culturally sensitive self management programs.
South Asian Chronic Disease Management
This program seeks to address the prevalence of chronic disease in the South Asian community. A stakeholder workshop has been completed seeking input on existing gaps, issues, and challenges related to the provision of care to chronic disease clients of South Asian origin.
New Canadian Clinics
Two New Immigrant and Refugee Clinics have been established in Surrey and Burnaby to address health issues specific to these communities in partnership with local non-governmental organizations (NGOs).
Multi-faith spiritual care services are available in the Fraser Health region. These services are available for patients and their families and staff as well. Dedicated multi-faith prayer rooms are available which have scriptures from various faiths at most of our locations. These rooms are open 24/7 to anyone who would like to use them to pray/meditate.
In addition to spiritual care and prayer spaces, staff are encouraged to celebrate their religious and cultural holidays. For example, Vaisakhi and Guru Nanak birthday celebrations have occurred at Surrey Memorial Hospital. The Hindu and Chinese communities also hold regular celebrations at this hospital.
The Fraser Health Cardiology Department has developed the first ever cardiac education program in Canada focused specifically on the South Asian community.
» Fraser Health has many culturally sensitive social marketing initiatives under way to educate individuals on healthy lifestyles. The marketing initiatives are multi-lingual and address health issues prevalent in that community (e.g. for the South Asian community the messages would be in Punjabi and address chronic diseases that are higher amongst this population).
»Our Maternity Department has done research in addressing the low birth weights of South Asian babies and has come up with a program to educate new mothers on healthy feeding.
»Surrey Memorial Hospital has built the largest single maternity rooms in Western Canada to address the needs of larger families in the community who wish to visit new mothers.
»Cafeteria menus have been updated to cater to different ethnic celebrations (e.g. Diwali, Chinese Spring Festival) and food services have been updated to include some ethnic foods according to patients’ preferences.
»Nutrition classes on cooking healthy Indian cuisine are being taught in Punjabi at sites across the Fraser Health to help address diabetes prevention through diet in this community.
»Language Cards are available to assist staff with common words in Punjabi and Chinese.
» Fraser Health staff participate in a discussion about the history of the Gur Sikh temple and the Sikh community in the Lower Mainland.