Community Learning Space

The infraNET Project and
Education Program for Health Informatics Professionals (EPHIP)
University of Waterloo

present ...

The Smart System for Health Agency:
An Overview


Roger Girard

Executive Lead, Client Services Division
Smart Systems for Health Agency

Wednesday, May 21, 2003
3:00 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Davis Centre, Room 1302
University of Waterloo


The Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care has a vision of advancing healthcare and enhancing physical and mental health in all life s stages, through a high quality system that is easily accessible for all Ontarians. This vision can only be realized if Ontario's health services are planned, developed, delivered and managed more efficiently than they are at present. Healthcare is information-based; therefore, effective healthcare requires timely access to accurate information. Since most healthcare providers still keep their records on paper, effective and efficient communication among healthcare providers is not possible today.

The Ministry s eHealth Strategy is designed to remedy this situation. The eHealth Strategy is composed of two components. The first component is a series of program reforms, each having an information technology element. When implemented, these reforms will result in automated electronic record-keeping and communication by the majority of healthcare providers. These reforms are referred to as eHealth Initiatives. The second component of the eHealth Strategy is a common information technology infrastructure, used by each of the eHealth Initiatives to facilitate electronic communication among healthcare providers. This infrastructure is called the Smart Systems for Health Agency. SSHA provides the critical information technology infrastructure required to facilitate secure electronic communication among Ontario s healthcare providers. Mr. Girard will provide a high-level overview of the province's eHealth strategy and a detailed description of the SSHA role in this strategy.

Roger Girard

Roger Girard is a healthcare information management professional with over thirty years of experience in the healthcare industry. Currently, Mr. Girard is engaged with the Smart Systems for Health initiative where he has served as the Executive Lead of the Client Services portfolio since June 2002. In 2001 he became Executive Lead, Infrastructure Services, where he led the early design and procurement of the SSHA technology portfolio. Previous to this, he was Chief Information Officer (CIO) and Executive Director responsible for Information Management at the Calgary Regional Health Authority. He has also been a CIO with the McGill University Health Centre (MUHC) in Montreal, as well as Canadian CIO with a major international pharmaceutical firm (Burroughs-Wellcome). Earlier in his career, Mr. Girard managed several R & D centres for an international information systems firm (Unisys), as well as a shared services company providing computer and accounting services to 160 healthcare facilities across Canada (Manitoba Health Organizations). Roger is also President of HealthOptions, Inc. an independent consulting firm specializing in healthcare informatics, as well as an Assistant Adjunct Professor at the University of Calgary. He is a member of COACH and CCHSE as well as the Canadian Advisory Committee (CAC) for ISO TC 215, which is responsible for the development of Canadian standards within healthcare systems, and the IM Task Force of the Canadian Cancer Control Strategy.

For more information

Shirley Fenton
The infraNET Project
Computer Systems Group, University of Waterloo
(519) 888-4074

Seminar Hosts

This seminar is hosted by the Education Program for Health Informatics Professionals (EPHIP) and The infraNET Project, University of Waterloo.

The infraNET Project, initiated by the University of Waterloo in 1996, is a partnership to advance Web and Internet technologies. Its founding partners are: LivePage (now part of Siebel), MKS, Open Text, RIM, Sybase (Waterloo) and Waterloo Maple.

We also gratefully acknowledge the assistance of the Institute for Computer Research, University of Waterloo.