FN TEP Update December 2013


FN Telehealth Expansion Project (TEP)

Progress to Date:  

Our Telehealth Expansion Project is underway!

FN TEP Engagement Process: 

Invitations to participate in the Telehealth project were sent to all First Nations communities in BC.

As of November 1st, 32 responses had been received from individual communities and 6 from First Nation Health Service Organizations representing 33 communities.  One community expressed interest, but wasn’t ready to participate at the time.   See the map below for more details.

The project’s Clinical Lead contacted each respondent to provide an overview of the project, discuss telehealth in more detail and to begin conversations about their health and wellness needs that could potentially be enhanced with telehealth. 

Gathering Wisdom:

At Gathering Wisdom VI in October, the FN TEP team hosted a breakout session, which included a live videoconferencing demo with Bella Bella and Takla Lake.  A mock patient demonstration showed the audience one of the many capabilities of telehealth.  Conference participants in Vancouver also spoke directly with nurses and doctors located in Bella Bella and Takla Lake about the positive outcomes they have experienced with telehealth.

The team also operated a booth where many great conversations were generated with community health staff about what telehealth is and how telehealth could benefit their respective communities.  

FN TEP Committees:

As the project’s community engagement work has been starting, several committees have been created to support the project’s work.  

FN TEP Advisory Committee
Purpose: to guide, support and endorse the project team on matters related to community engagement, developing telehealth programs, evaluation and sharing of best practices. 
Representation: First Nations Health Directors Association, FNHA Regional Directors and several health authority partners 

First MeetingNovember 28, 2013. This group will meet monthly.

FN TEP Clinical Working Group 
Purpose:  to discuss the development of telehealth programs and policies, education and training of end users and to share knowledge from successful telehealth programs across the province.

Representation: community and health authority partners. 

First MeetingOctober 25, 2013. This group meets monthly.

FN TEP Technical Working Group 
Purpose: to work through technical issues of the project including network connectivity, scheduling, privacy and security, telehealth equipment, and technical support.  

Representation: All Nations Trust Company, Telus and health authority partners.

First MeetingOctober 22, 2013.  This group meets monthly.

Next Steps:

Readiness/Needs Assessments will be completed with FNHSO’s that have expressed interest in the project. The Needs/Assessments will help the project team understand each community’s “Current State” regarding their health and wellness needs, how these services are currently delivered, and where there are gaps in service delivery. If communities have telehealth experience, their stories and lessons learned will also be captured. The Readiness Assessments will look at the current technical environment of each facility and other key areas such as privacy and security where change will be required to support telehealth.

Current State Analysis – information collected during the completion of the Readiness/Needs Assessments will be analyzed and will help in defining appropriate telehealth programs to match each community’s unique priorities.

Future State Analysis – Building on the Current State Analysis, health centre workflows will be amended or redesigned to support the successful integration of telehealth into day-to-day health centre operations. Plans will be developed to address gaps in privacy and security practices to enable secure and confidential telehealth sessions, and support models will be developed with communities to ensure each session is successful.

If you have any questions about the First Nations Telehealth Expansion Project, please contact us at telehealth@fnha.ca.


View the interactive Map Here.