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August 14, 2015

Patient & Family Advisor Network grows

Saskatchewan’s Patient & Family Advisor Network group, coordinated by the Health Quality Council (HQC), is continuing to grow and connect patient and family advisors throughout the province.

The group was initiated on Facebook in March 2015 and, since that time, 48 members have joined – and other Saskatchewan patient and family advisors are also welcome to participate.

“The Patient & Family Advisor Network connects individuals who serve as advisors to the Saskatchewan health care system. Individuals in this group are registered as patient and family advisors in at least one health region in Saskatchewan,” said Malori Keller, a kaizen specialist at HQC who focuses on patient- and family-centred care.

“The hope is that advisors can network and share ideas across the province via posting on the Facebook group site and/or by participating in webinars. HQC will also share opportunities for engagement and learning to this group.”

For example, a Patient & Family Advisor Network webinar will be held on September 1, 2015, at 3 p.m. All patient and family advisors, as well as patient- and family-centred care leads from Saskatchewan’s health regions, are welcome to participate. The webinar will provide an overview of the provincial Patient- and Family-Centred Care (PFCC) strategy as well as highlight how patient and family advisors are engaged throughout the province.

Patient and family advisors are individuals from the community who have had recent experience as a patient or as a family member of a patient accessing health care services. They provide insight and feedback on topics such as policy development and programming, as well as actively participate alongside providers and staff in quality improvement efforts in Saskatchewan’s health care system. Patient and family advisors play a key role in supporting PFCC principles. More information about what patient and family advisors do can be found in the newly developed Patient and Family Advisor Handbook.

PFCC is a philosophy based in respect, dignity, collaboration, information sharing, and meaningful participation. In 2014, a provincial PFCC strategy was finalized and a new governance structure was developed to support the strategy. The three-year strategy seeks to support health regions to increase the level of engagement of patients and families in their own care, in each organization, and across the health system.

“The provincial PFCC strategy is a document that was created with the input and support from the health regions and agencies in Saskatchewan. Together we seek to support the advancement of a patient- and family-centred philosophy of care throughout Saskatchewan,” said Keller.