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History/Milestones - The Growth of eCHN

Milestones of Growth


For many years, The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids) has been a magnet for families seeking the best quality of health care for their children, no matter how far they have to travel. Now SickKids reviews its model of health care delivery and develops a new vision of its future as a "hospital without walls".  The goal is to share the hospital's expert knowledge with other health care facilities and provide a continuum of high quality care to children and families as close to home as possible.


SickKids' vision is endorsed by the Ontario Government. The Child Health Network of Toronto is formed, comprised of all health organizations providing paediatric care in the greater Toronto Area. It soon becomes clear that an information highway for moving information seamlessly from one health care provider to the next is vital to this new system of health care delivery.


The Hospital for Sick Children partners with the Ontario Ministry of Health to create the electronic Child Health Network. eCHN begins to build the Proof of Concept for a new patient-centric electronic health record. It starts aggregating patient data from five founding member sites, representing a cross section of paediatric health care providers.


eCHN goes live with its five founding member sites. Four are in the Greater Toronto Area - the Hospital for Sick Children, St. Joseph's Health Centre, Saint Elizabeth Health Care and the Rouge Valley Health System's Centenary Health Centre. The fifth is the first remote site -  Orillia Soldiers' Memorial Hospital. A handful of individual physician's offices are also linked in to the network.


Two more hospital organizations, Bloorview MacMillan Children's Centre (now Holland Bloorview Kids Rehab) and Credit Valley Hospital are added as members to eCHN, bringing the total number of hospital sites to 8. As well, Grandview Children's Centre, a Children's Treatment Centre in Oshawa becomes a member.


A push into northern Ontario brings Regional Health Centres, such as Sudbury Regional Hospital and Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre into eCHN, along with many community hospitals.  eCHN also moves into the Ottawa area, adding the Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario to its membership. The total number of  hospital sites reaches 30.


eCHN expands steadily into every region of Ontario. Another growth spurt brings the remaining three paediatric Tertiary Care Centres - London Health Sciences Centre, Kingston General Hospital and Hamilton Health Sciences - into the network. More community and teaching hospitals become members and the total number of hospital sites reaches 75. The number of paediatric patients represented by eCHN records climbs to over half-a-million.


eCHN expands to encompass 100 hospital sites, including two important regional groups – Kitchener-Waterloo-Wellington and St. Catharines-Welland-Niagara  - as well as 80 Community Care Access Centre sites and 30 Children’s Treatment Centre sites. The number of paediatric patients represented by eCHN records increases to well over a million. 


eCHN celebrates its 10th Anniversary as Canada's first province-wide integrated electronic health record. The number of member sites, including medical clinics and physicians' offices continues to climb. The number of paediatric patients represented in the system reaches a million-and-a-half.


eCHN expands to include 109 medical clinics and over 1,000 physicians’ offices across Ontario. The number of paediatric patients represented in the system nears two million.


eCHN adds the charts of over 240,000 new patients to its data repositories. The total number of hospital patient encounters integrated into eCHN reaches over ten-and-a-half million.


eCHN adds an innovative new online service, e-Referral, to streamline the process of making referrals to SickKids outpatient clinics. The hospital designates eCHN's e-Referral as the electronic process by which all referrals to its ambulatory clinics are to be made. The total number of patients integrated into eCHN reaches over two-and-a half-million.


The e-Referral system is an immediate success. The number of physicians' offices with eCHN user accounts nearly doubles over one year. eCHN expands to include all three major hospitals from the populous and rapidly growing York region - Markham-Stouffville, Mackenzie Richmond Hill and Southlake. The total number of hospital patient encounters integrated into eCHN nears 15 million.


A remarkable new digital tool designed to meet the needs of health-care providers looking after children with Diabetes makes its debut. The iSCREEN Tracker, developed by eCHN in collaboration with the SickKids Diabetes Clinic provides all the patient data required for monitoring and managing this complex chronic disease via a Dashboard viewer. The number of eCHN's active users comes close to doubling in one year.

eCHn growth Video