“Attendance at APAC Forum helps to develop a collective understanding of the term ‘improvement’, says Counties Manukau Health chair Lee Mathias.
Dr Mathias describes improvement as moving gradually, and in a collaborative way, to a new space.
“We know that we can’t keep doing things the way we’re doing them. It is either too expensive, or we’re just not going to have the capacity in terms of the types of people we need. So we need to make some major transformations to our models of care over the next 10 years, and that will be things like moving towards self-directed care, and a lot more individual and family responsibility.”
She says APAC Forum, run by Ko Awatea, helps to bring people on board with this.
“All through the year, people are accessing the Ko Awatea website. They are accessing the same sort of way of thinking, the same underpinning principles and so forth. So the level of capability in improvement science has considerably improved in the health sector over the last five years.”
Ko Awatea’s strength comes from a team with a strong desire for effective change, Dr Mathias says.
“They all go out and really search for the right sort of preparation for themselves so that they are the world leaders and people therefore have confidence in them and they’re very credible.”
She hopes recent delegates to APAC Forum 2015, held at Auckland’s SKYCITY Convention Centre have taken away the key message that they can’t do this [strategic improvement] on their own.
“We need to have sounding boards and it needs to be fast, so it has got to be all the time, it has got to be dynamic.”
Referring to Ko Awatea director Professor Jonathon Gray’s keynote speech, in which he called for international sharing of information about healthcare improvement, she says this can be done on a large scale.
“We’re already sending out messages or asking for input in a small group, and we can do this in a much bigger group and we can do it using the Ko Awatea improvement principles to underpin those discussions.”
Attracting more than 1500 delegates, APAC 2015 has demonstrated that it is sustainable, so Dr Mathias has great hopes for the APAC Forum 2016, to be held in Sydney.
“From now on, it is ‘how creative can we be?’”