BC Patient Safety & Quality Control Council has awarded the 2009 award for Excellence in Quality & Safety to Northern Health Authority. This award is to recognize significant achievement in quality or patient safety in each of BC’s health authorities. The 2009 Award continues the tradition of the Patient Safety Task Force Awards. Over the past four years, health care providers and administrators working in obstetrics have come together as a cohesive team with a shared passion and goal for putting patient safety first. To date, ninety-three percent of Northern Health obstetrical healthcare providers (including physicians, midwives, nurses and administrators) are participating in the program. Evaluation of the program has found a growth in leadership capacity with safe patient care at the core. 

Northern Health

Top left to right: Dr. Michael O’Malley (Prince George), Bev Haugland RN (Terrace), Dr. Suzanne Johnston (CNO), Siphewe Chakawa RN (Prince George), Dr. Octaaf Bultreys (Dawson Creek), Kelly Joy RN (Fort St. John), Margaret Redekopp LPN (Chetwynd), Tamara Kropp RN (Quesnel), Ruby Fraser RN (Regional Risk Manager), Helen Trombley (Program Assistant), Dr. Mi Kim (Hazelton), Dr. Lisa Nickson (Fort Nelson), Alison Gidding RN (Smithers), Leslie Murphy RN (Prince George), Silvana Todorovska RN (Prince George, Jane Ritchey RN (Prince George), Dawn Gauthier RN ( Fort St. James), Kelsey Johnston RN (Burns Lake), Diana Canning RN (Chetwynd), Dr. Andrew Sear (Quesnel), Linda Davies RN (Prince George), Dr. Sheila Smith (Smithers), Lynn Schien RN (Prince George), Belinda Maidment RN (Patient Care Manager: Prince George), Dr. Gordon Horner (Queen Charlotte), Dr. Marijo Odulio (Prince George), Kerry Laidlaw RN (Queen Charlotte), Angelita Villanueva RN (Kitimat), Luella Judge RN (Dawson Creek), Leslie Brndiar RN (Fort Nelson), Rose Perrin RN (MOREOB Program Coordinator), Roxanne Fitzsimmonds RN (Prince Rupert), Cheryl Peters RN (Vanderhoof), Dr. Bill Kingston (Prince George).

The MOREOB Program’s Annual Cultural Assessment for 2009 revealed that participants had an improved sense of work culture, including: open communication with respect to patients and general knowledge; valuing each other’s knowledge-base and skills sets; and an improved sense of teamwork. An improvement in staff retention and recruitment has been seen in all sectors.

Statistical information from the B.C. Perinatal Health Program database shows improved statistics on the number of: labor inductions, mothers who received an epidural, intermittently listening to the unborn baby’s heart during labor (auscultation), number of caesarean-section deliveries, and newborns with cord blood gases after delivery.

Changes and efforts that were made to achieve these outcomes and spread the initiative included the following:

  • Promoting the annual program components of the MOREOB program for all participants.
  • Monthly regional obstetrical rounds via videoconference.
  • Development of a Regional Perinatal Council, including quality practice working groups.
  • Growing communities of practice.
  • Design of a template to support Council development for other disciplines such as critical care, emergency care and residential care.
  • Annual planning conference for core team leaders.

 For more information, about the success of the MOREOB Program in Northern Health, please contact Fraser Bell (Vice President, Planning, Quality and Information Management, Northern Health) at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

 1. BC Patient Safety & Quality Council. (2009).  Celebrating Achievements in BC.  Retrieved December 7, 2009, from