In this show, Dr Dan and Jamieson talked about involvement of patients and families in decision making about healthcare.
We discussed the benefits, different kinds of involvement (from at the bedside to policy making) and gave some tips and advice on opportunities to get involved.
It helps healthcare providers and the system to do a better job, it can be a good reality check and help healthcare organizations think more broadly than within the confines of their day to day work. It can result in better outcomes by ensuring healthcare policy aligns with patients’ needs.
Jamieson shared his experience as part of a health youth council when he lived in Drumheller.
The International Association for Public Participation has developed a spectrum to assess public participation, ranging from inform to consult to involve to collaborate to empower
The Ontario Patient Engagement Framework provides another framework for understanding patient and family engagement.
We also talked about some of the challenges of getting involved as a patient and the amount of time, energy and depth of knowledge which is sometimes required (at some points going from being a patient expert to an expert patient).
We highlighted some specific opportunities to get involved with healthcare planning on a more formal basis including: the Alberta Health Services Patient and Family Advisory Group, in Primary Care Networks (perhaps as a community board member) and through the Health Advisory Councils.
Even if you don’t want to get formally involved, perhaps one of the most important ways that we can all shape healthcare services is by giving feedback.