Data Story

Appropriate Use of Anti-psychotics (AUA) in Calgary Zone Supportive Living Sites


A joint project led by the PLP and the Seniors Health SCN to improve the appropriateness of antipsychotic use  (AUA) in Supportive Living by engaging interdisciplinary teams in a process improvement workshop. 

The PLP focus was on including physicians in the health care team engagement, ensuring that all critical team members co-developed plans to improve patient care together, and on providing an opportunity for teams from many sites to exchange best practice ideas for AUA.

Based on post-workshop evaluation
Based on post-workshop evaluation

33 care providers from 6 Supportive Living sites attended (including 12 physicians)


The use of antipsychotic medications in seniors is common despite recommendations and evidence supporting reduced use. Together, the Physician Learning Program and Alberta Health Services (Seniors Health Strategic Clinical Network, and Analytics, DIMR) co-developed a learning workshop to support teams at supported living sites improve antipsychotic utilization.


During a 4-hour interdisciplinary workshop, health care teams that included physicians, medical residents, case managers, registered nurses, pharmacists, nurse practitioners and other support staff developed vision statements to guide their work, identified and prioritized improvement opportunities, and developed an action plan for change including specific deliverables, owners, and timelines for implementation.

Comparative antipsychotic prescribing data was shared as a baseline for improvement efforts and to stimulate friendly competition.

Lessons Learned

  • Multidisciplinary workshops for site-based teams are effective in engaging physicians in process improvement.
  • Freedom to locally plan and implement improvements generates high quality and actionable improvement plans.
  • Ensuring the confidentiality, accuracy and relevance of healthcare data involves multiple stakeholders.
  • A shared goal to improve team-based care helped our organizations collaborate effectively on a complex project.

Next Steps

There are plans to scale the workshops provincially, and we expect to adapt this prototype as necessary to accommodate local contextual issues in different healthcare facilities and the communities they serve.