November 3, 2004

Health Links-Info Santé Claims Award

Manitoba's innovative Health Links – Info Santé has become the first Canadian recipient of the "I-Care" Award for excelling at meeting high operational standards at the Hospital Solutions conference held in New Orleans.

Paul Nyhof, the Director of the Health Links – Info Santé was on hand to receive the award. It is given to health call centres that demonstrate:

Customer-Centered Care

"Our nurses and other front line staff are our greatest asset. They are dedicated to making sure Manitobans, no matter where they live have access to accurate and up to date health information," says Nyhof.

"We were the first to offer telephone triage in Western Canada. This year is our 10th anniversary. In that time we've made the transition from one nurse to a 6 seat contact centre prior to the recent expansion and enhancement to a 35 seat 'state-of-the-art' live call contact centre receiving over 200,000 calls a year."

Besides offering symptom assessment, health education and referral Health Links – Info Santé also provides information on timely public health issues like influenza, SARS, West Nile Virus, Hepatitis C and a breast-feeding hot-line.

"Health Links – Info Santé make sure all Manitobans have access to primary health care, regardless of where they live," said Tim Sale, Minister of Health for Manitoba. "I want to commend the staff for their excellent work in providing Manitobans with valuable health information."

Winnipeg Regional Health Authority CEO Dr. Brian Postl said the award recognizes Health Links – Info Santé as an international leader in delivering health information to the public.

"The vision that led to the creation and further development of Health Links – Info Santé here in Manitoba is now being adopted by communities across the continent,” Dr. Postl said. “That’s something we can all be proud of."

While this is the first award for the Misericordia Health Centre based service, Health Links – Info Santé has been nominated for six Manitoba Excellence in Contact Centre Achievement (MECCA) awards in areas like training, technology, and employee satisfaction. Health Links – Info Santé is a provincial program of the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority operated by Misericordia Health Centre on its behalf. Other partners are Manitoba Health and the Regional Health Authorities of Manitoba. The service provides quality primary health care to Manitobans 24 hours a day, seven days a week in English, French and over 120 other languages through an interpreter.

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