Residents First

Schlegel Villages is proud to be in involved, along with the Health Quality Ontario and over 100 other Long Term Care Homes and other stakeholders, in the Residents First Quality Improvement Initiative. 

Ontario’s long-term care sector is increasingly focused on providing evidence-based care with accountable, transparent public reporting of results. It’s a time of change that is both demanding and exhilarating.

The sector has complex changes and broader accountabilities to manage, focusing on new governance, regulatory, public reporting and quality structures, including:

1.      Long-Term Care Home Act, 2007

2.      RAI – MDS (Common Assessment)

3.      Long-Term Care Service Accountability Agreements (LSAAs)

4.      Public Reporting

5.      Compliance Transformation

6.      MIS

To understand and proactively respond to this evolving landscape, the sector has joined together with other healthcare stakeholders to collaborate on the development and implementation of a provincial initiative, Residents First. This initiative, made possible through the support of the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, will help homes gain new expertise and skills to meet their broader accountabilities and advance quality for all long-term care home residents. Residents First was created by the sector for the sector. It’s partnership-driven with 12 sector partners, including Ontario’s 14 Local Health Integration Networks.  

Through customized training in quality improvement (QI) science and practice, the Residents First initiative supports long-term care homes in Ontario in providing an environment for their residents that enhances their quality of life. It also facilitates comprehensive and lasting change by strengthening the sector’s capacity for quality improvement.

Residents First features four learning streams:

1.      A Leading Quality program for leaders

2.      Improvement facilitation training for designated staff within homes

3.      LHIN-based learning collaboratives for interdisciplinary team within homes

4.      LEAN process improvement training for all improvement facilitators and on-site LEAN coaching for QI staff in select homes

Residents First uses proven methods to help homes identify opportunities for quality improvements across a range of topic areas, including:

  • Avoiding unnecessary emergency room transfers
  • Preventing falls
  • Preventing pressure ulcers
  • Continence care
  • Supporting continuity of relationship with residents

Up to now, staff in 122 early adopter homes have been trained through Residents First in facilitating improvement and/or in LEAN process improvement, and interdisciplinary teams within these homes have been part of a LHIN-based learning collaborative. As of July 30th, all homes can sign-up for the initiative by registering in the Leading Quality program.

Provincial Kick-Off of the Residents First Leading Quality program – September 27, 2010

Beginning this fall, the Leading Quality program is now being offered to all long-term care home leaders. The program will teach participants how to:

  • Implement quality as an organizational strategy
  • Build an executable transformational strategy
  • Execute effective governance for quality
  • Measure and publicly report quality
  • Channel attention to quality
  • Build quality improvement capability necessary to achieve aims
  • Inspire care staff; engage physicians
  • Involve residents and families in improving processes

The Leading Quality program will kick-off on September 27th with an all-day session at the Sheraton Centre in downtown Toronto. It is anticipated that over one thousand leaders will take part, as each home is invited to bring three participants. It will feature a balance of distinguished and inspirational speakers, core quality improvement curriculum, as well as networking opportunities. Three regional working sessions and a final congress will follow. For more information, visit

We’re proud that our own, Josie d'Avernas, M.Sc. (University of Waterloo) Associate Director, Schlegel-UW Research Institute for Aging, is a Vice-Chair of the Residents First Steering Committee. Josie’s a big champion of the initiative. Her leadership is helping homes gain new expertise and skills to meet their broader accountabilities and advance quality for all long-term care home residents.

We’re also proud that our own Village of Wentworth Heights is one of the 122 early adopter homes actively engaging and leading a QI process as part of Residents First and that all Schlegel Villages will be participating in the Residents First Leading Quality Program kickoff on September 27. 

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