A resident/family-centered, team-based quality improvement collaborative approach to comprehensive pandemic preparedness in long-term care homes

Dr. Akber Mithani’s team is one of two BC research teams being co-funded by Health Research BC and the BC Ministry of Health, and supported by the BC Patient Safety & Quality Council, as part of the Implementation Science Teams – Strengthening Pandemic Preparedness in Long-Term Care Initiative led by Healthcare Excellence Canada.


Practices that show promise to improve response to the COVID-19 pandemic in long-term care homes need to be quickly implemented. These practices relate to outbreak preparation, prevention and response; COVID-19 and non-COVID-19 care; staffing; and presence of family.


Our research team will study the experiences of long-term care teams as they conduct projects to implement promising practices to address gaps in their pandemic response. The teams will include residents, family, staff and management in six long-term care homes across Fraser Health. They will use a shared approach involving quality improvement training, engagement support, and the use of an online app to share learning between homes.


Key questions to be answered are:

  1. How can an online shared approach be used by team members within long-term care homes to improve pandemic response?
  2. How can this approach help in knowledge sharing across long-term care homes to promote best practices in pandemic response?

The lessons learned from the projects will inform strategies for pandemic response, which will be shared with other long term care homes across Fraser Health. The findings of this study will add to the efforts of 14 research teams across Canada as part of a larger initiative aiming to improve pandemic response in long-term care.

End of Award Update – March 2024


During the PAPLOC study, a quality improvement (QI) tool tailored for the long-term care (LTC) setting was developed and named the ‘Fraser Health QI Pathway to Excellence.’ Since its initial creation, this tool has undergone several iterations and improvements. Moreover, it has been successfully incorporated into organizational practices within LTC homes across Fraser Health, serving as a valuable resource to facilitate rapid cycle testing and documentation of QI projects. The development and adoption of this tool exemplify the study’s significant contribution to supporting the pursuit of enhanced care quality and outcomes in LTC facilities within the health authority. As for research outputs, a first paper from the PAPLOC study entitled ‘A quality improvement collaborative approach to COVID-19 pandemic preparedness in long-term care homes: a mixed-methods implementation study’ has just been accepted for publication in BMJ Open Quality following a peer-review process since September 2023. A second paper entitled ‘Case study of implementing a virtual quality improvement collaborative to foster COVID-19 pandemic preparedness in long-term care homes in British Columbia’ is being submitted to the Journal of Long-Term Care.