Since the Québec Ministry of Health and Social Services (MSSS) undertook the restructuring of its network in the early 2000’s, the province’s four faculties of medicine have been responsible for the coordination and delivery of tertiary care, teaching, research and technology assesment in Québec.
The MSSS’s plan divides the province into four Réseaux universitaires intégrés de santé (RUIS), each one served by one of the four faculties of medicine: McGill University, Université de Montréal, Université de Sherbrooke and Université Laval. Every RUIS has the mandate to contribute to the coordination of tertiary healthcare, teaching and research offered by each faculty of medicine and their teaching hospitals.
In the case of RUIS McGill, these are the McGill University Health Centre (MUHC), the Jewish General Hospital, the St. Mary’s Hospital Centre and the Douglas Mental Health University Institute.
In 2003, RUIS McGill sought to understand the needs and expectations of the population in each region belonging to its vast territory. Communication and collaboration were determinant factors to the success of overcoming numerous challenges. The RUIS McGill territory includes 1.8 million people spanning 7 regions. Health determinants — such as revenue, education, social environment and social support, available health services and culture — vary according to each region. Additionally, the shortage of healthcare professional is a distinct problem requiring its own solutions.
Since RUIS McGill was established, its members have worked to offer new opportunities for learning, to promote residents’ training in the regions, to increase skills in telehealth, and to create clinical coordination. All of this allows patients to be treated as close to their homes as possible within the contstraints of available resources and expertise. RUIS McGill's goals remain unchanged: to be a role model for tertiary care, research, teaching and evaluation of technologies and to help improve the health and well-being of all Quebecers.