Update on Quality Framework Project

This update was provided at the most recent Abilities Annual General Meeting (September 18, 2020): 

The past year saw a great deal of activity related to Phase #2 of the Quality Framework project. While it took a little bit of time to solidify a Memo of Understanding and final budget for this phase of the project, we did move ahead in June 2019 to complete our second round of stakeholder engagement, visiting the seven same communities that we had visited previously. We met with people with disabilities, their families and service providers to share what we accomplished and learned in Phase #1, what recommendations we had made and what was coming up next. We also shared a draft copy of the Leading Practice Guidelines and solicited feedback on both content and implementation until the middle of July.

Personal Outcome Measures Pilot:

A formal Expression of Interest to participate in the pilot was sent out to all Manitoba CLdS organizations in November, to which eleven organizations responded. All eleven organizations will participate in the pilot, seven were selected to use Personal Outcome Measures and four were originally selected to be used as control organizations for the purposes of a formal evaluation conducted by Healthy Child Manitoba – Social Innovation Office (HCMSIO)

Two Quality Specialists were hired who are assisting with training and interviewing using the Personal Outcome Measures tool/method.

The pilot officially began on January 6th with three Abilities Manitoba staff obtaining their training and certification in the use of Personal Outcome Measures. Two of these same staff were certified to train others. Training of staff in the seven pilot organizations began in January and to date, we have trained 89 people. A handful of CLdS staff are also included in this number.

Interviewing began at the beginning of February. Our aim is to provide the opportunity for 20% of the people supported within the pilot organizations to participate in a Personal Outcome Measure interview. Feedback based on what was learned that may help the organization improve its services for that person is then provided. Care was taken to choose 20% of the people within each organization that is representative of the demographic characteristics of the total number of people they serve.

Due to the pandemic, interviewing and training were halted in mid-March however, has slowly resumed beginning in late July as organizations and people receiving services feel safe to do so. We have taken advantage of the nice summer weather to do outdoor interviewing and are also conducting virtual interviewing as well to keep all involved safe.

A formal evaluation is planned to discover whether the use of Personal Outcome Measures is beneficial and if so, how. Originally, Healthy Child Manitoba (Social Innovation Office) was resourced to conduct this evaluation, however, changes in this department as well as the pandemic have led to some challenges in this area.

We are working with our partners in government for more resources to extend the original timeframe (and budget) of the project to:

  • Allow for time to hit our 20% target acknowledging that the pandemic has disrupted our original schedule.
  • Expand the pilot to fold in the control organizations as the original design of the evaluation is no longer valid and we hope that all interested organizations can still benefit from the pilot
  • Conduct a robust third-party evaluation of the project and its original objectives.

Leading Practice Guidelines:

The Leading Practice Guidelines are now set up on the Abilities Manitoba website in an interactive format along with associated resources, sample policies and documentation. You can access these here: https://abilitiesmanitoba.org/docs/leading-practice-guidelines/

We are developing a plain language/easy read version of the Leading Practice Guidelines so that people receiving support and their families will have more information about what they could expect.

We are also developing a self-assessment workbook for organizations to use the Leading Practice Guidelines to assess where they are in relation to the guidelines, where they want to be and what they intend to focus on in the next year to move forward. We have several organizations that are interested in trialling this workbook once fully drafted.

Abilities Manitoba would like to acknowledge and thank the Province and in particular the Department of Families, Community Living disAbility Services for their ongoing support and collaboration on this project. 

If you have any questions on the project, please contact Leanne Fenez at leanne@abilitiesmanitoba.org or 204-791-9319.


We are looking for YOU!

Image description: Woman looking directly into the camera through binocolars

If you are curious about people, passionate about quality services and have always put people at ease, we are looking for you!

As part of the upcoming Personal Outcome Measures pilot project we are hiring two people!  The successful candidates will be trained as Certified Interviewers/Trainers in the use of Personal Outcome Measures and will spend a year interviewing people with intellectual disabilities along with those that love and support them. We think this is a pretty cool opportunity! Find out more in the Quality Specialist Posting. Closes November 19th, 2019. 

Pilot Project launches with release of Expression of Interest

Each journey starts with a single step! We hope you will join us on this new journey!

Image description: Toddler standing at the bottom of a large staircase, looking down.

We are so pleased to release the Expression of Interest to all service providers funded by CLdS within Manitoba for participation in an upcoming pilot project. This pilot will evaluate the use of Personal Outcome Measures as an effective outcome measurement tool within Manitoba. Communication will be sent out over the next couple of days directly to each organization to ensure that all service providers are given the opportunity to participate! 

It is exciting to be moving forward to this next Phase of the Quality Framework project work. More information about the Phase one of the Quality Framework can be found in the Final Report .


Quick Quality Framework Update

After a whirlwind tour of Manitoba, all the Quality Framework presentations are now complete! A huge thank you to those that came out to a session. The conversations were hugely valuable in informing next steps and shape the way forward. Watch for a summary of the feedback we heard as we visited different communities soon! 

The pilot project will now start in November, with hiring and selection of organizations beginning in September. The project will include working with 5-6 organizations to utilize Personal Outcome Measures over the course of a year. Watch for an expression of interest coming out in late summer! 

If you have any questions, feel free to contact Leanne at 204-791-9319 or qa@abilitiesmanitoba.org


The Quality Framework Project is going back on the road!

Quality Framework for Community Living DisABILITY Services

Community Consultation Plan

In October 2017, the Department of Families and Abilities Manitoba entered into a partnership to improve how we understand and measure quality of life and the services provided by Community Living DisABILITY Service (CLDS) funded agencies. To help with the development of a quality framework, we asked the following questions:

    1. What does a good life look like? What outcomes are present when people with disabilities (or any of us) are living a good life?
    2. How do we know when people are living a good life? How do we measure or discover this in a consistent way?
    3. What do we need to do to support people to live a good life?  What standards need to be met to ensure this is the case?
    4. What tools will help service providers improve their services or help people in the best way possible? How do we continue to build capacity and encourage growth for all service providers?

In the winter of 2018, we visited communities throughout the Province to gather perspectives on these questions. At that time, we promised to return to these communities to share what we learned and how we hope to move forward together.  We are doing this in June!

Want to learn more?

  • Attend a presentation near where you live. We will be visiting seven different areas of the Province to share our results with people receiving services, their families and service providers. Locations and dates of sessions are here: Schedule of Quality Framework Presentations . Registration is free at abilitiesmanitoba.org/events . Just click on the date and presentation that’s right for you!
  • Read the final report. A report on what we learned and how we hope to move forward is available by following the following link: Quality Framework Final Report
  • Review and comment on the Leading Practice Guidelines. You can read the draft Leading Practice Guidelines and provide input at the following link: Leading Practice Guidelines

Need help to register? Require ASL translation or other accommodations? Call Leanne at 204-791-9319 or Email: qa@abilitiesmanitoba.org

Note: Registrations will be taken until the maximum number of participants for each presentation has been reached. If your plans change and you are no longer able to make the meeting, please let us know so that others wishing to attend can be notified.

Leading Practice Guidelines released for review and feedback

Thank you for interest in the Leading Practice Guidelines. The guidelines reflect the current understanding on best practice in service delivery. They were developed through a partnership with Abilities Manitoba and the Department of Families. Continue reading “Leading Practice Guidelines released for review and feedback”

The Possibility Post: What We Heard

It has been one full year since work on the Quality Assurance Framework has begun and we are excited to share an update on the information we gathered from stakeholders across the Province.

We began the project by going out to talk to people with disabilities, their families and service providers through a variety of methods.  Focus groups and surveys were done in order to tell people across the province about the quality assurance project and to get their feedback.

We visited seven different areas of the Province (Selkirk, Steinbach, Winnipeg, Dauphin, Brandon, Thompson, and Winkler)

We asked two main questions:

  1. What is a good life?
  2. What do people need from their paid services to support that good life?

We held focus groups with each group separately to make sure that people felt able to freely share their thoughts and ideas.  We limited the number of people who attended each group in order to make sure that the size stayed easy to facilitate and small enough to have good conversations.

For those that did not wish to or were not able to attend, we offered the opportunity to send in answers to the two questions in writing or online.

All information received from focus groups and surveys was reviewed by Health in Common who developed a detailed report of the findings. We then took that report and summarized it into a plain language version that you can find here: What We Heard Summary

We offered those that attended focus groups an opportunity to sign up to receive a copy of what we learned. This report is being emailed or mailed out to those that requested this shortly.

What we heard will shape the development of the framework, outcomes, and standards. We appreciated the time, energy and candor that was shared with us. This work will be better informed because you took the time to share your thoughts!

Keep watching here for new Possibility Post updates to keep up with what is happening and when you can have input once again!

The Possibility Post: Where the rubber hits the road to quality!

People jumping behind the words "It's not what we have, but who we have" By Winnie the PoohThis week is Direct Support Professional (DSP) Week and in pausing to honour the important and impactful work of DSPs in our Province, we reflect on their considerable contribution to the quality of life of the people they serve every day.

John F. Kennedy Jr., wrote, “Quality is defined at the point of interaction between the staff member and the individual with a disability.” Indeed, Direct Support Professionals define quality in every personal interaction they have each day. People with developmental disabilities work to fully contribute as valued members of their communities. The availability of qualified, competent, and stable Direct Support Professionals plays an important role in supporting people to accomplish these goals. To be successful, it is critical that DSPs have the competence, confidence, and ethical decision-making skills with the guidance necessary to provide quality support.

Continue reading “The Possibility Post: Where the rubber hits the road to quality!”

The Possibility Post: To Listen…

Over the past couple of months, we have embarked on a Province wide road trip to talk to people with disabilities, their families and the people who provide services to them. It has been a rich and profound experience to have people share their hopes, ideas and stories with us as we have gone to the different regions of the Province.
Continue reading “The Possibility Post: To Listen…”

The Possibility Post – Connection, Curiousity, Clarity

roadtripMuch has occurred over the past month and we are excited to begin our ‘road trip’ around the province to connect with people with disabilities, their families and service providers.

To recap… what exactly are we doing?

Through a partnership with the the Department of Families (Community Living disAbility Services, Abilities) and the broader community of people who receive services, their families and their service providers we intend to discover and develop four things:

  1. What does a good life look like? (What outcomes are present when the people with disabilities (or any of us)  are living a good life?)
  2. How do we know when people are living a good life? How do we measure or discover this in a consistent way?
  3. What do we need to do to help people to live a good life.  What standards need to be met to ensure this is the case?
  4. Tools that will help service providers improve their services or help people in the best way possible. How do we continue to build capacity and encourage growth for all service providers.

Continue reading “The Possibility Post – Connection, Curiousity, Clarity”