High-profile Healthcare Facility a Success due to People and Vision
Schulich Sessional Instructor Sherena Hussain and Professor James McKellar recently conducted a case study of Bridgepoint Active Healthcare, a 464-bed rehabilitation and complex care hospital affiliated with the University of Toronto, which re-opened its doors in April 2013. Now part of the Sinai Health System, Bridgepoint is the single largest organization in Canada to focus exclusively on research, care and teaching for people with complex health conditions.
In wondering what made this reimagined hospital such a triumph, the researchers focused on the use of public-private partnerships (PPP) for social infrastructure. They discovered success with PPPs was about people; Hussain and McKellar’s research uncovered the role of personalities, relationships and strong leadership in bringing a successful project to fruition in the face of complex, intersecting challenges. The findings of their research were published in Public Works Management & Policy (2020).
In 1997, the Ontario government planned to close the existing hospital and transfer its patients to other long-term care facilities. Marian Walsh, Bridgepoint’s then president and CEO, provided strong leadership that “embodied in clarity of purpose, tenacity, interpersonal skills, effective communication skills, management of governing bodies, and a vision,” McKellar emphasizes.
The vision for success was driven by two fundamental pledges, say Hussain and McKellar: a commitment to a hospital environment that directly addressed the special needs of various stakeholders, and a commitment to a surrounding community in need of economic and social renewal.
This new facility, featured in many architectural publications, served an important symbolic as well as functional role, extending beyond the physical buildings.
Read York University’s full article on the study here.