Local entrepreneur seeking to inspire health care reform

May 24, 2019   ·   0 Comments

By Mike Baker

A local thinktank-based organization is leading the charge to help Canada become one of the planet’s leaders in innovation. 

KADIMA Village was founded in 2016 by Susan Radojevic, a local resident whose past experience included owning and operating an event marketing company in Toronto. After selling her business in 2006, Ms. Radojevic wanted to “marry her passion”, which, she says, centres around inspiring people to do great things. 

“I wanted to do something where I could pay it forward, almost,” Ms. Radojevic told the Citizen. “I’ve had the opportunity to travel all over the world, as a result I’ve been able to see how fantastic our country is. We’re like the quiet giant. We have so much to offer. We have a really incredible opportunity, as a nation and as a people, to really lead the world in a lot of ways.” 

Explaining exactly what KADIMA Village is, MS. Radojevic noted it was a combination of various different things. 

“Imagine TED Talks and Southwest Conference & Festivals had a baby. That baby is KADIMA Village. What differentiates us is our approach to inspire and engage participants. There are no ‘talking heads’ here. Instead, we create conditions to inspire people for peer-to-peer experiential learning through deep dive collaboration.” 

One of the key areas Ms. Radojevic hopes to inspire change is in the health care sector. As such, she is hosting Canada’s Healthcare Innovation Day on June 18 in Burlington. It will be a lab-based event designed to get people talking, and thinking, about Canada’s health system. 

Susan has had the opportunity to see how things work up close and in person over the past couple of years, with both her mother and father enduring stints at hospitals in the region. Her father has been living with Congestive Heart Failure for the past 17 years, but things took a turn for the worse in August last year when he was admitted to Credit Valley Hospital in Mississauga. 

While he survived, thanks, Ms. Radojevic said, to the work of two “amazing” doctors at the hospital, her father’s stay opened her eyes to a myriad of issues within Ontario’s health care system. 

“My issue isn’t with the people, it’s with the design of the system. I don’t believe in the approach that is being used here. Our government talks these changes they’re implementing as being patient-centric, but the only thing they’ve really talked about are efficiencies. Basically, dollars and cents,” Ms. Radojevic said. “I don’t believe health care should be a money thing. It should be a human right.” 

She called out Premier Doug Ford and Ontario’s Health Minister Christine Elliott for what she perceived to be a lack of communication and collaboration with the public over announced changes to regional health zones across the province. Back in February, Ms. Elliott revealed the government plans to dissolve all 14 of Ontario’s Local Health Integration Networks, as well as six other administrative bodies, to form a new super agency titled Ontario Health. 

Ms. Radojevic believes such a system will have a detrimental effect on health care services in Ontario. As such, she is inviting individuals to take part in her health care lab, taking place next month. 

The event is being held at THiNKSPOT in Burlington. Attendees will be challenged to think outside the box and provide suggestions, thoughts and ideas on three key issues facing the health care sector, not only here in Ontario, but across Canada. 

The process behind this lab started back in January, when Ms. Radojevic posed a question to KADIMA Village’s online database of approximately 200 people. There, she asked individuals to put forth ideas on how to improve the delivery of health care services in Canada. She received 18 suggestions in total. From there, she launched a second phase, which, again, asked the database how they would spend $1 million on health care. From there, she has selected three top choices, which participants at the lab will use to experiment on. 

Ms. Radojevic is currently looking for “health care champions” to help sponsor the lab. The cost per person is $1,000. She estimates she needs approximately 25 participants to run the lab successfully. 

“We have all of this data now, gathered through our database, we need to do something with it. If we care today, we solve tomorrow. That’s what this is about, encouraging individuals to come out and share openly without the fear of being reprimanded or criticized, because that’s where innovation comes from,” Ms. Radojevic said. 

She firmly believes change needs to happen, and needs to happen fast. Looking to the future, Ms. Radojevic claims that statistics show that 25 percent of Canada’s population are projected to be 65 and over by 2036. 

“I did the math, that’s an additional 9.24 million people tapping into our health care system at any given time,” Ms. Radojevic said. “If we can’t manage the people using our health care system today, how are we going to manage an additional nine million in the future.” 

The high cost of the lab, Ms. Radojevic states, comes from costs involved with putting it on. 

“We aren’t making any money off of this lab. We’re just looking to recoup our costs. This is a specialized facility, and we will have people on hand over the course of the day helping us with our experiments, and to form our ideas,” Ms. Radojevic said. 

She added, “An ideal outcome for me would be to have at least one person walk away and say ‘I’m going to do something about this’. If one person is going to do it, then others are thinking about it.” 

She says KADIMA Village has a long-term plan in place to continue collecting data that she hopes will inspire change not only in Canada’s health care sector, but in other areas too. In the fall, she plans to host an environmental workshop centering around ‘Saving Mother Earth From Us’. 

For more information on KADIMA Village, visit 

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