Quality Improvement Decision Support Specialist – Hamilton FHT (Hamilton)

Quality Improvement Decision Support Specialist – Permanent Full Time (1.0 FTE)

Start Date – June 2017
Job Posting Date: May 10, 2017

We are seeking a Quality Improvement Decision Support Specialist (QIDSS) to join our team.  This position is an employee of the Hamilton Family Health Team but also provides support to other Family Health Teams within the Hamilton, Niagara, Haldimand, Brant (HNHB) LHIN.

Hamilton is a port city in southern Ontario with a population of over 720,000.  Hamilton is home to the Royal Botanical Gardens, the Bruce Trail, The Canadian Heritage Wartime Museum, McMaster University and Mohawk College. There are numerous parklands and waterfalls.  As well, a fast-growing arts sector in Hamilton includes art galleries, recording studios and independent film production.

As the largest Family Health Team in the province, the Hamilton Family Health Team (HFHT) includes: 166 physicians and over 250 other health professionals serving approximately 290,000 patients.  These clinicians work together in a collaborative environment to get patients the care they need and keep them healthy. The vision of the HFHT is to build “a healthier Hamilton”.

The Quality Improvement Decision Support Specialist (QIDSS) is responsible for supporting practice teams within the HFHT, and also other FHT partner sites, in their quality improvement planning, decision making and implementation activities.  This includes reviewing data quality, supporting teams in the implementation of data quality initiatives, improving the flow and use of information, developing queries and analytical products to support boards and leaders in their quality improvement goals and teams engaged in clinical process change. The QIDSS will work closely with the members of the HFHT Quality Improvement (QI) unit and Family Health Teams (FHTs) in the Hamilton Niagara Haldimand (HNHB) LHIN.

The QIDSS will extract health information from one or more electronic medical records (EMRs) systems running in participating practices and other sources. The incumbent is also expected to participate in broader data harmonization initiatives and champion the use of data and performance analytics within and across Ontario’s family health teams.


Supports quality improvement decision support capacity building:

  • Supports the board, senior leadership and other stakeholders in the assessment or quality improvement data and decision support needs
  • Serves sites as a subject matter expert in data integrity and leads the analysis of data quality issues, using problem-solving methodologies to recommend corrective and preventative action
  • Collaborate closely with multi-disciplinary teams engaged in quality improvement to identify performance measurement information and data quality needs
  • Support the work of boards and quality improvement committees in the development and implementation of quality improvement plans
  • Support management decision making by developing, generating, analyzing and interpreting extracted health information

Improves data integrity and comparability:

  • Assesses the underlying causes of poor data quality and leads the identification and implementation of data quality improvement initiatives
  • Ensure high quality data is available for extraction as needed by developing and implementing systems to identify, tract, correct and prevent errors
  • Design, test and deploy tools and processes for extracting and managing performance data
  • Develop data feedback reports and data checking routines
  • Verify extracted data against source documentation and develop standard operating procedures for data cleaning
  • Communicate data quality issues to FHT leadership in a timely and accurate manner
  • Improves data access and use
  • Identify gaps in data availability, and define and implement solutions to close the gaps
  • Provide consultative and analytical support regarding the collection, interpretation, analysis and presentation of data to help teams ensure that clinical information management practices support best practice standards
  • Act as a change agent and coach to inter-disciplinary teams on data management and performance measurement
  • Conduct analysis and develop reports and presentations using statistical reporting packages, and present this information to a variety of audiences
  • Monitor and evaluate clinical information system functionality from a user and decision support perspective

Develops effective working relationships and manages work independently:

  • Create effective working relationships with the steering committee and multiple teams across member sites
  • Manage data quality, business process improvement, data extraction, report development and other projects using effective project management practices
  • Contribute actively to local and provincial standards development and data harmonization activities
  • Participate in committees and regular provincial QIDSS activities

The above responsibilities are not to be considered all-inclusive; the QIDSS may be assigned other related duties in consultation with the manager of the Quality Improvement Unit.


  • A university degree in a related discipline (E-Health /Health Informatics, Business Administration, Statistics, Health Sciences or Information Management) or equivalent education and experience (Masters level preferred)
  • Highly effective communication, presentation and interpersonal skills and a proven ability to develop and maintain strong relationships with partners
  • Demonstrated expertise in data quality and clinical information management best practices
  • Knowledge of primary care and demonstrated interest in the use of data for quality improvement
  • Demonstrated skills in project management skills involving divers stakeholders
  • Sound knowledge of performance improvement techniques and practices used in healthcare settings, process redesign and system implementation experience
  • Demonstrated proficiency in quantitative analysis and report-writing skills
  • Ability to handle a variety of concurrent assignments and to work independently
  • Valid Ontario driver’s license
  • Understanding of the importance vision in creating change.
  • Strong knowledge of change management theory
  • Health Informatics/E-Health experience in primary care preferred
  • Specialized skills and knowledge:
  • Strong applied knowledge of one or more EMR/HER systems currently in use in Ontario
  • Demonstrated proficiency in programming in a language used to extract data from EMR (eg. SQL) is required
  • Knowledge of additional report writing and statistical analysis packages (SSRS, SSIS, SSAS or Crystal Reports <as locally applicable>) and a demonstrated ability to learn similar packages quickly will be considered an asset
  • Knowledge in applicable privacy and confidentiality policies and laws regarding the collection and use of health information is required

Day-to-day direction will be provided by the Manager of the HFHT Quality Improvement Unit.  Strategic direction for the work of the QIDSS will be taken from the direction of the HNHB LHIN  QIDSS Steering Committee.

The home base for the position will be at Hamilton Family Health Team, 123 James Street North, Suite 300, Hamilton, Ontario L8R 2K8. The incumbent will be expected to travel to partner sites regularly.

This position typically works 40 hours per week Monday – Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. On occasion, evening and weekend work may be required. It is anticipated that the incumbent will flex her/his hours in those circumstances to 40 hours per week.

If you wish to apply for this position, please email Human Resources at with a copy of your resume and cover letter by June 5, 2017.

The HFHT is committed to creating a diverse environment and is proud to be an equal opportunity employer.  All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, colour, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age, or veteran status.

We thank all applicants; however, only those selected for an interview will be contacted.