EDITORIAL: We’ve done great, but how can we do better?


OMNI Health Care team members from across the organization did a great job in 2015 of driving ingenuity to enhance quality of life for the more than 1,400 residents living in the organization’s 18 long-term care homes. Read more

OMNI focusing on taking successes to the next level in 2016


Processes for enhancing resident experience, ‘embedding’ quality improvement will highlight year, says Patrick McCarthy

PETERBOROUGH, Ont. – OMNI Health Care president and CEO Patrick McCarthy says the organization and its 18 long-term care homes will largely focus 2016 on enhancing successes garnered in 2015. Read more

2015 a year of driving ingenuity to enhance residents’ experience


OMNI CEO Patrick McCarthy reflects on important shifts the organization saw last year

While 2015 was not a year of new initiatives launched by OMNI Health Care, it was a year that saw those working in the organization’s 18 long-term care homes using their ingenuity and working to enhance the resident experience, says OMNI’s president and CEO Patrick McCarthy. Read more

Ontario court to rule on government’s physio plan

On Wednesday, a three-judge panel will hear whether there is reason to hold off on implementing changes to physiotherapy services for seniors in Ontario. 

In April, the government announced it would redirect some of its funding to alternate sources so that more seniors in the community would receive care. Since then, there has been aggressive campaigning on behalf of those offering services in long-term care and retirement facilities. They say the process the government used to alter and announce the funding was flawed, even by its own rules.

In July, a single-judge hearing offered physiotherapists another month before a final decision by this week’s three-judge panel will be rendered.

Stay tuned to this site for the latest news.

Patient-centred care key at OMNI Health Care

Inspired Leaders at 17 Omni Health Care centers. Photo Courtesy of OmniWay.

Inspired Leaders at 17 Omni Health Care centers. Photo Courtesy of OmniWay.

Inspired Leaders identify keys to success

July 21, 2013 — Jeanne Pengelly

It doesn’t matter which of OMNI Health Care’s 17 homes you go to, or which of the Inspired Leaders you speak with, the message is the same: Being recognized for outstanding contributions to patient care is certainly a key to employee satisfaction.

This year, OMNI’s senior management team chose to let each home choose its own “inspired leader.” The choices were made by peers and colleagues, and the winners were celebrated at the managers’ retreat at FERN Resort in Orillia this spring.

Without exception, each of the winners has divulged what they consider the secret to their success, and to their satisfaction with their position at their own home.

April Faux, for example, at Burnbrae Gardens in Campbellford, starts her day saying hello to colleagues and stopping to chat with them. She does the same thing when the afternoon shift starts.

Faux is always ready to assist her peers when necessary, another quality that seems to rise to the surface in OMNI Health Care homes.

“Anywhere that I can help, I will jump in if I can, and they really appreciate that,” she says.

A theme clearly evident in the stories Inspired Leaders tell is that the culture of OMNI Health Care encourages individuality, innovation and respect.

“People need to know that their opinion is valid,” Faux says, “and getting people’s opinions and suggestions is (important.)”

Brian Lafantaisie, for example, is a cook at Forest Hill in Kanata. His job tends to be a lot of the same thing, repeated again and again — exactly the thing that leads him to seek solutions to minor and major inconveniences in the process of preparing residents’ food. Not only are his solutions appreciated, tested, and embedded in procedure, but his colleagues and his boss encourage him to find those answers that make things easier and more efficient for everyone.

Kentwood Park nutritional services manager Catherine Reid was first drawn to the home by the mission and values that put communication and patients first. Now she says Kentwood Park is a workplace unlike any other she’s experienced.

“When you come in here you feel like you’re at home,” says Reid, pointing to the culture of respect that clearly puts residents first.

Even at the small 66-bed home in Selby, Ont., the atmosphere is one of respect and love. Environmental services and office manager Jane Hughes speaks of the “family atmosphere,” something OMNI Health Care managers try to put front and centre.

If there is a way to bottle the formula these employees utilize on a daily basis, it would encompass a system of care that incorporates outgoing personalities seeking to create a safe, comfortable home for each resident. It’s a method of care that includes respecting colleagues and residents, encouraging opinion and suggestion and embracing change with a smile.

Celebration of Life

Celebration of Life from The OMNIway on Vimeo.

Marilyn Colton speaks of life in Almonte

In the video we watch staff and residents participate in a celebration of life.

Taking time with time

Simple solutions make short work of bigger problems

Small problems gain critical mass if one does not present a rapid, workable solution.

Cook has a recipe for success

Cup of positivity, few ounces of imagination = solutions galore

For someone who is most concerned with the preparation and presentation of food, Brian Lafantaisie has a remarkable knack of shaping far more than that.

He is a cook at OMNI Health Care’s Forest Hill in Kanata; Brian is also the Inspired Leader for that residence, and that’s because of the way he takes small inconveniences and turns them into great possibilities.

For example, simply preparing a week’s worth of washed and cut celery rather than cutting and cleaning it for each meal has saved time not just for the cooks, but for others.

His most recent foray into innovative solutions has to do with the way purees are served; instead of taking the time to individually wrap each small bowl, Lafantaisie suggested the bowls be taken to the residents’ units in steam trays, and served directly from there. It saves time in the kitchen, and again for the servers, whose job it was to unwrap each container for the resident.

They are small things, Lafantaisie says, but he’s known for the one to come up with the solution.

“I was honoured. I really was. I said, ‘You think I’m a leader, really?’ For me, I thought I was just doing my job because of the amount of experience I have, I was just passing it along to the next person. To win the award, I was like ‘Wow’,” he says.

Having been at Forest Hill since it opened 12 years ago, Lafantaisie says the job can be mundane at times. His favourite task is when he’s asked to create a buffet or a special event for the residents, such as the one a few weeks ago when a family member requested a function to show appreciation for the staff.

“That’s what gets my creative juices flowing,” he says, adding that he used to love catering.
In fact, the humble cook from Forest Hill’s kitchen once helped cater a party — including teaks to order — on Victoria Island in Ottawa for 5,000 people.  It showed him what was possible when you are organized and imaginative.

So what keeps a chef like that interested in a job where every Monday the meal includes pudding, and every Tuesday it’s roast beef? Moreover, what makes him so invested in his job that his colleagues would choose him as their Inspired Leader?

Lafantaisie says he thinks it’s his attitude.

“It is challenging at times because it’s monotonous. It’s always the same,” he says. “I guess it’s how you approach your job. Some people think, ‘Ugh,  I have to go to work again, ugh,’ but I try to challenge myself to do my job a different way, and I try to instil that in the other cooks.”

“I like to find new, easier, more efficient ways to do things. It took me 12 years to figure out the puree solution, but I figured it out,” he laughs.

If you have a story you would like to share with the OMNIway, or feedback on this story, please contact the newsroom at 800-294-0051, ext. 30, or e-mail jeanne(at)