Discussion Paper: Canadian Health Policy Since Romanow: Easy to Call for Change, Hard to Do - Steven Lewis

Report — August 02, 2013

By Steven Lewis

It is clear that it takes more than vision and high-level policy to bring about reforms. Healthcare is transactional and healthcare decision-making is highly decentralized. Delivering better care more efficiently, working in teams, and patient-centred care are nothing less than a cultural revolution. Policy can remove barriers to change (for example by eliminating obsolete funding and payment models) and enable change (for example by redefining and making organizations accountable for performance). But ultimately cultural change is a battle for the hearts and minds of practitioners – their sense of mission, how they are educated, their hierarchy of values, their expectations, and their willingness to organize their work around their patients. If they do not co- create and embrace change, it will not occur on a large scale.

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