Editor’s Note: Think Research’s ‘People Behind the Change‘ series features exceptional clinicians who are transforming care and improving patient outcomes everyday through quality improvement, service delivery and more. We’re honoured to share their success stories!

We recently had the opportunity to sit down with Dianne Tomarchio, Manager of Quality Improvement at Scarborough and Rouge Hospital. Dianne’s journey is a compelling story of perseverance and staying true to one’s passion for change and patient-centred care.

Dianne is a registered nurse who moved from Michigan to Canada in 1986, and has been with Rouge Valley (now Scarborough and Rouge Hospital) for 32 years. Beginning her career in the coronary care unit as an RN, Dianne moved into the ICU, where her career really began to blossom.

During her time in the ICU, the opportunity to participate in a quality improvement initiative presented itself and Dianne stepped up to the challenge. She helped to roll out 2 patient safety initiatives within the ICU, the first for prevention of Ventilator-Associated Pneumonia and the second for Central Line Associated Bloodstream Infection Prevention. Dianne embraced the learning opportunities that these projects provided, and the results were striking: a dramatic decrease in VAP and a 0% rate for Central Line Infection.

Fueled by a hunger for change, Dianne jumped at the opportunity to become a clinical practice leader for the ICU, which she excelled in for close to 10 years. In this role, Dianne worked with ICU nurses to enact improvements, maintain practice levels and support critical learning initiatives. This led her to her current role as Manager of Quality Improvement, which means that at a corporate level, she’s focused on patient safety and improving patient experience and outcomes, which is her true passion and driving motivation.

Within this role, Dianne began to support the Order Set steering committee at Rouge Valley, and has worked closely with our team. As one of the earliest partners of Think Research, Dianne says that Order Sets “align very nicely with [her] passion for patient safety” and continue to support best practice and standards of care.

The most interesting stories take unexpected twists and turns, and what makes Dianne’s story especially intriguing is that she originally studied to become a pilot! In her spare time though, she worked with children who had special needs, and she was eventually asked to take on a summer assignment working with babies up to 4 years of age. It was during this assignment, which was actually within a long-term care facility, that Dianne became fascinated with nursing. Throughout her career, it was role models such as Dr. Naresh Mohan, Prior Chief of Staff at Scarborough Rouge, who urged Dianne to fearlessly pursue what matters most: the patient.

It’s been an honour working with Dianne over the years, and as she describes, “Think Research and ours are truly a team, working together towards a common goal – ensuring that we have the research and expertise to back our practice. We’re working together on tools that make things better for patients.”

From pilot-in-training to Registered Nurse to Manager of Quality Improvement, Dianne’s titles may have changed, but her dedication to patient care has been unwavering. A leader and changemaker at heart, Dianne continues to inspire the team here at Think Research, and we’re proud to have her as part of our clinical network.

For more information on how your hospital can benefit from Order Sets, download the brochure.