Evolution of Imagine Health Centres
One of the more common questions we get is, “how did Imagine Health Centres get started and why?”
Imagine Health Centres came to fruition when a Pharmacist and Medical Doctor were introduced together by mutual friends. Not only did they find they have a lot in common and became friends, they both found they had the same growing concerns about patient care and the fragmentation or lack of coordination of this care when it came to patients who access other healthcare professionals (OHCP) – e.g. pharmacists, physiotherapy, nurses, dietitians, behavioral health specialists, etc.
This friendship and belief that there were ways to improve Alberta’s Family and Primary Care clinics was the start of a successful patient driven and entrepreneurial venture.
Co-Founders and friends, Dr. Jonathan Chan and Ray Yue, designed Imagine Health Centres with patient focus and preventative healthcare in mind. They opened their first Centre in June 2012 on the south side of Edmonton with their second Centre opening a few months later in Calgary. Today, IHC has a total of five Centre’s in operation and are always looking at further expansions to assist patients.
What is different about IHC than other family medicine practices?
Some primary differences are the collaboration between the multidisciplinary team and the commitment to proactive focused patients care.
What does this mean?
This means that OHCP’s work together as a team to help treat and diagnose patients. Although many healthcare centres have physio, pharmacy, nurses, etc. in the same building or vicinity there is little sharing and collaboration amongst these groups which leads to fragmented patient care.
Can you give me an example how my care can benefit from this team?
This is an example of how the collaborative multidisciplinary approach has helped one patient.
A patient ended up in emergency due to a swollen tong and almost had their airways blocked off. The ER physician recommended that the patient go see their family physician in follow-up to help diagnose what was wrong so this does not reoccur as they were lucky they made it to the ER in time. Even after calling their doctor, which was not at an IHC run facility, and explaining the severity of the situation, the clinic team & doctor would not make time for the patient to come in and be diagnosed.
The patient called IHC and explained their situation. IHC talked to the doctor and they made time for the patient to come in, even though they were not an IHC patient. The patient met with the nurse who helped to look up the relevant documentation required and started the investigative process with the patient. The doctor was then called in to meet with the patient and further assess the situation. They then involved the Pharmacy team who did a thorough medication review. Through the tests being requested and the team approach, it was determined that there was a unique drug reaction between the medications prescribed.
Since this incident, the pharmacy and nursing team have followed up with the patient as preventative measures to ensure there were no adverse reactions to the changes made and followed up with the patient’s family physician at the other clinic to help maintain continuity of the patient’s care.
Making Patients #1, above all else
Imagine Health Centres believes in making patients #1, above all else!
By having a shared Electronic Medical Records system between the family physicians, specialists, pharmacists, nurses, physiotherapists, dietitians, etc., any or all of these team members can help assess and provide a team approached care for the individualized patients care. This was both Dr. Jonathan Chan’s and Ray Yue’s vision when they created Imagine Health Centres.