Results from the shared assessment and single framework pilot of the Ontario Common Assessment of Need (OCAN) are available. The pilot was conducted across seven health service providers (HSPs) in the North East and Central West Local Health Integration Networks (LHINs) to look at how OCAN assessment information can be shared between HSPs. OCAN is a standardized, consumer-led, decision-making tool that assists with mental health recovery.
Pilot findings were presented to the Steering Committee at meetings in August and September. Participating HSP staff members described their experiences and reported that:
- Shared assessment benefitted the consumer by helping develop a more comprehensive assessment for the individual;
- Increased collaboration resulted in better working relationships between programs and agencies; and
- The common goals of all contributing providers were known, and staff members were aware of who was responsible to provide support.
The OCAN Steering Committee is also looking at how tools such as the GAIN Short Screener (GAIN-SS), which is being used by many HSPs, might fit with OCAN. The three- to five-minute screening tool from Chestnut Health Systems is part of the Global Appraisal of Individual Needs (GAIN) family of screening and assessment measures. The Community Mental Health Common Assessment Project (CMH CAP) will gather feedback and data from HSPs who are implementing both OCAN and the GAIN-SS and will report on the strengths and challenges of using both tools.
In other OCAN news, the OCAN Reports Committee, which operates under the provincial CMH CAP Steering Committee, has held its first session. Members of the committee include consumers, HSPs, researchers, LHINs and Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care representatives. The role of the committee is to oversee the development of reports that will build on the documentation that has already been produced.