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Healthcare Change Makers

Oct 5, 2020

Today, Ellen Gardner and Philip De Souza, Communications and Marketing at HIROC, speak with Bernard Leduc, President and CEO of Hôpital Montfort.


From the day he joined the hospital in 1999 as a family physician to serving as Chief of Staff and then being appointed President and CEO in 2010, Bernard Leduc has never lost sight of the mission that drives the hospital: to serve the francophone population in the Ottawa area and deliver a high level of patient-centred care. “In the words of my predecessor, ‘We cannot fail’.” With small step improvements and empowering staff to make changes, for this leader failure has never been an option.


At the time of the recording (August), Montfort was not experiencing a high volume of COVID cases, but by mid-September, were coping with a few more. Throughout the pandemic, Dr. Leduc and his team have stayed visible and made sure staff feel safe and protected, continuously asking, “Do you have what you need?”. The philosophy that has kept the hospital on an even keel during COVID is the one that serves him well as CEO every day – it’s rooted in three words: transparency, communication and recognition.


Key Takeaways:

[1:14] What keeps Bernard engaged in the mission of the hospital

[3:17] How the hospital keeps employees and the community connected with the hospital’s origin story

[6:24] How uncertainty about the hospital in 1999 shifted to a sense of purpose and solidarity

[7:37] Still gaps in the provision of services to francophones

[10:39] The three words he lives by during a crisis

[12:27] The importance of validating the fears and anxieties of staff

[15:26] His recognition during the crisis of the need to rely less on consensus and be more decisive

[18:33] Why the relationship with the Board needs to be a partnership based on trust, transparency and communication

[19:35] Hôpital Montfort’s vision is to deliver exceptional care “avec vous et pour vous”

[21:27] Initiatives the hospital has taken to improve quality with a focus on Lean Management

[24:21] Following the advice of an old African proverb, “If you want to go fast, go alone; if you want to go far, go together”

[27:09] Steps being taken towards succession planning

[29:13] What Bernard thinks needs to happen to “turn the corner” on patient safety


Mentioned in this Episode:


Hôpital Montfort

The Ontario Health Services Restructuring Commission 

Lean Tools

Studer Group

Marie Josee Martel

France Morin – Clinical Manager, Family Birthing Centre (Montfort)

Talking to Strangers – Malcolm Gladwell

Indian Horse – Richard Wagamese


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