Supporting Electronic Submission of the HBHC Screen

woman holding baby in front carrierThe Healthy Babies Healthy Children (HBHC) program connects families to personalized post partum follow-up care with public health professionals. The weeks following birth are a critical period for infants, setting the stage for long-term health and well-being. The HBHC program helps eligible families access important resources such as breastfeeding support and a home visiting program (with a Public Health Nurse and Family Home Visitor).

BORN works behind the scenes to make sure public health nurses have access to information needed to contact families and offer services in a timely manner. BORN’s electronic HBHC screen (eHBHC) has been used to securely transfer screening information from hospitals to public health units since June 2019. The eHBHC program was recently expanded to include midwifery practice groups. Midwives attending out-of-hospital births can now submit HBHC screens electronically instead of faxing paper forms (reducing security risks and ensuring the safety of client personal health information).

For HBHC screening to work efficiently and effectively, information must flow seamlessly from midwives (who conduct the screening) to public health nurses (who coordinate services). The BORN Information System eHBHC tool provides the mechanism for the secure and timely transfer of this information – information that is critical to ensuring vulnerable families get the supports and services they need.

BORN, the Ministry of Community and Children’s Services, and the Association of Ontario Midwives (AOM) collaborated to launch the eHBHC solution for midwives on March 22, 2021. Currently, 75 Midwifery Practice Groups have adopted this technical solution.

Improving the Midwifery Invoice System

woman and baby holding hands (only shows arms and hands)

In Q4, BORN updated the Midwifery Invoice System (MIS) with new functionality that gives Midwives working within Midwifery Practice Groups (MPGs) secure, direct access to their billing information via the BORN Information System. This functionality supports a long-standing need to enhance transparency in the invoice system.

This improvement is a great example of collaboration between provincial entities: BORN, the Association of Ontario Midwives (AOM) and the Ministry of Health (MOH). 

 Promoting the 'Midwifery Data Matters' Campaign

three babiesIn Q4, BORN collaborated with the AOM to promote the AOM #MidwiferyDataMatters! Campaign – developed to educate midwives about the importance of data acknowledgement in the BORN Information System (BIS).

Acknowledgement is an administrative step that serves to verify that data entered into the BIS is free of flagged errors, inconsistencies, and inaccurately linked records. Acknowledgement is a signal that data is ready to be used for report and analysis purposes. If data has not been acknowledged it cannot be included in the provincial dataset or used as comparator data in clinical reports.

Remi Ejiwunmi, a registered midwife and researcher, understands the importance of acknowledgement, especially for midwives: “Midwives' unique model of care can be validated by the excellent outcomes collected in BORN. Unfortunately, until data is acknowledged in BORN, it's as if it doesn't exist. Every month we do not acknowledge our data, we are unable to view thousands of data points that set midwives apart from other health care providers and demonstrate rationale for important practices, such as early discharge, delayed cord clamping, skin-to-skin, expectant management and more.”

The #MidwiferyDataMatters campaign is an important strategy aimed at improving acknowledgement rates.  In addition to the work related to data acknowledgement, BORN’s Midwifery Clinical Content Specialist has been working closely with the AOM, midwives, and midwifery practice groups to identify other knowledge gaps relating to BIS data entry and use. With help from the BORN Perinatal Engagement Team and a Midwifery Education Program student, new tools have been developed and validated to address these gaps. For example: