Shaping the future of health and care: World Cancer Day

As we stand on the brink of World Cancer Day, February 4th, a day of global unity against cancer, Imagine Citizens Network is both honoured and impassioned to share this moment with you. Our dedication to integrating citizen voices into the very core of healthcare transformation resonates deeply with the spirit of this global day […]

Collaborate with ICN to add your voice to Refocus Alberta’s Health System

As we look towards a change in Alberta’s health care system, we at ICN are excited to play a role in engaging with citizens to shape Alberta’s Health System Refocus initiative.

Join us as we explore the key principles that will support the new system along with the organizations: primary care, acute care, continuing care, and mental health and addictions. Together, we’ll identify what we hope the system will look and feel like with Alberta’s refocusing initiative.

Transforming Healthcare Together: Bringing Care Opinion to Alberta 

Our healthcare system is facing a crisis. An increasing number of people do not have access to primary care. Lengthening wait times for treatment, surgery, or to see a specialist are threatening the health and recovery of thousands of people. With our ageing population, continuing care is often disjointed and difficult to navigate while escalating […]

Creating the Conditions for Safe Care: Interoperability Saves Lives Report

Written by Teri Price, Co-Chair of the Alberta Virtual Care Coordinating Body (AVCCB) and Executive Director of Greg’s Wings.  Two things have been top of mind lately, the conversations we had about safe healthcare during Canadian Patient Safety Week, and the release of the Interoperability Saves Lives report. Over the last 10+ years, we have […]

Shaping the future of mental health care: World Mental Health Day 2023

Every year, on October 10th, the world comes together to observe World Mental Health Day, a day that reminds us of the profound impact mental health has on individuals, communities, and societies. It’s a day when we collectively raise our voices to spread awareness about mental health issues and advocate for better access to mental […]

ICN Collaboration with Precision Health: Block Week 2023

Imagine Citizen Network (ICN) members have proudly been active participants in the Precision Health (PH) program at the University of Calgary’s Cumming School of Medicine since its inception in August 2021.   The program aims to provide healthcare tailored to individual characteristics and has four streams:  Quality and Safety Health Professional Education Innovation and Entrepreneurship Precision […]

ICN Welcomes New Board Members

At our June 2023 Annual General Meeting, ICN welcomed four new Board members and for the first time since our founding in 2015, a new Board Chair.  ICN is pleased to welcome Stephen Samis as Board Chair.  Stephen relocated to Edmonton one year ago after working across Canada in health policy areas for many years.

Engaging Albertans on Modernizing Alberta’s Primary Health Care System

Imagine Citizens Network (ICN) has been working with Albertans to capture what matters most to them about primary healthcare and share these insights with the Modernizing Alberta’s Primary Health Care System (MAPS) initiative. The goal is to identify immediate and long-term improvements that can build on Alberta’s many primary health care successes. 

ICN engaged with 32 Albertans from across the province to identify guiding principles that reflect people’s values regarding the redesign and delivery of primary care programs, services, and care.

Addressing the Social Determinants of Health – Modernizing Primary Health and Care

This is the third story in our series Modernizing Primary Health and Care where we share the recommendations we provided to Alberta Health’s Modernizing Alberta’s Primary Health Care System (MAPS) initiative.

Our health is shaped by a complex set of factors, including genetics, lifestyle choices, environment, and social determinants of health. Social determinants of health refer to a wide range of social, economic, and environmental factors that affect our health, such as income, housing, education, and discrimination.

Focusing on Community – Modernizing Primary Health and Care

While a citizen-centred approach to health is essential, many factors beyond an individual and his/her family impact health. Health is a community accomplishment. Structural and social community assets such as easily accessible recreation facilities, green spaces, employment opportunities, affordable housing, safe roads, faith-based and cultural organizations, and service clubs are examples that contribute to health outcomes.

Becoming Citizen-Centred – Modernizing Primary Health and Care

At Imagine Citizens Network, we believe citizen-centred care should be a priority in reforming Alberta’s primary health system. 

Citizen-centred care considers the individual in the context of their life, their environment and social context and the opportunities life has afforded or limited, and the health and community options available in them. This needs to be the starting point for primary health: the understanding of the context in which the citizen lives. 

Digital Health – What is it and why it matters 

We are on the cusp of unprecedented change in the way health services are delivered, personalized, accessed, and funded. The rapid growth in connected personal health services, devices, and data is creating opportunities to re-imagine aspects of healthcare access and delivery, personal health and fitness, and health data.   

Who Should Own Our Health Information? 

As healthcare becomes increasingly reliant on technology, questions about who owns health information and how it is accessed become increasingly important. Understanding where data is stored, how it is accessed, and who is responsible for safeguarding it are at the centre of the digital health evolution. According to Dr. Ewan Affleck, “information is the currency of care.” Personal health data is an enabler of patient safety, better health outcomes and reduced harm.  

Educating Future Healthcare Leaders: ICN Brings the Patient Voice

Last summer, Imagine Citizens Network (ICN) was invited to participate in the new transdisciplinary Precision Health program at the Cumming School of Medicine (University of Calgary) which brings together future healthcare leaders, entrepreneurs, and educators to improve patient care. Precision health is a new and innovative approach to healthcare delivery. It’s tailored to a patient’s genetic, environmental, and lifestyle factors and, as the name implies, it is aimed at keeping people healthy by personalizing the prevention and treatment of individuals “precisely”.

Health Equity: The Vision for a Fairer and Healthier World

As September signals the start of the formal academic year, students from all communities across Canada prepare for the year of learning ahead. Yet significant cultural variations may emerge to illustrate the diversities and dynamism of the student group as a whole. Equity raises awareness about these important variations with reference to fair access and participation in basic needs such as health and education, to transform social systems that serve everyone equally within their unique contexts.

Supporting Newcomer Communities to Improve Their Own Healthcare

Several years ago, ICN and other patient-partnered organizations initiated the iKnow Health project to help people in Alberta understand how healthcare works, how to navigate and advocate for themselves, and how to apply their rights. While that project was designed to reach a wide population with its online guide Healthcare Basics for Albertans, we knew there were significant additional challenges for rural and minority/marginalized communities. To better understand these challenges, we partnered with the Alberta International Medical Graduates Association (AIMGA) to support volunteer Connectors to host seven conversations about healthcare in newcomer communities in Alberta.

Healthy Aging in Alberta: measuring what matters

If you are 65 and older or care about someone who is, add your voice to Alberta Health Service’s (AHS) strategic planning!

ICN is partnering with AHS to connect with Albertans to identify the most important measures of quality in AHS’s work with older adults and their supporting caregivers.

Giving Day 2022

Imagine Citizens Network, through our relationship with O’Brien Institute of Public Health at the University of Calgary, is inviting you to participate in Giving Day – our most significant donor campaign of the year. Your gift will go twice as far with the matching funds offered by the University.

Last year marked a turning point in our evolution. Since our inception seven years ago, we have been a volunteer powered organization. Last year we received a donation of $150,000 ($50,000 over three years) allowing us to begin to hire core staff.

In the coming year, we will continue to build our foundation (technology infrastructure, staffing and funding) as well as focus on two key initiatives: