Sign into your account

Top Prevention Highlights

Patient and family engagement evidence-based practices and top prevention techniques

Infrastructure and staff engagement

  • Identify a designated leader for patient and family engagement to ensure provisions for ongoing and sustained patient and family input into hospital care and services. The leader should facilitate the process for development of sustained partnerships with patients and families and support their involvement throughout the organization.
  • Appoint a patient- and family-centered committee or patient and family advisory council comprised of patients and families and formal and informal leaders of the organization.
  • Ensure that hospital staff and physicians understand the importance and principles of PFE, patient- and family-centered care, patient and family advisory councils and the inclusion of patient and families on various hospital committees and teams.
  • Ensure there are provisions for having the voice of the patient and family go to the hospital’s board either through direct membership, membership in key board committees (e.g., performance improvement council) or through ongoing engagement with the PFAC.
  • Continuously assess and improve the extent to which the concepts and principles are implemented within your hospital or health system.
  • On the basis of the assessment, set priorities and develop an action plan for establishing patient- and family-centered care at your institution.

Establish patient and family advisory council

  • Have committee, patient and family criteria and job descriptions for all participants.
  • Recruit and interview for the patient and family members.
    • Recruit patients and families to serve as advisors in a variety of ways.
  • Appoint patients and families to other key committees and task forces.
  • Develop a process for obtaining and exchanging information between the hospital board and PFAC to ensure the voice of the customer is included in all activities.
  • Conduct patient interviews to incorporate into the entirety of the patient and family feedback.
  • Identify and build internal support for PFACs among key operational and physician teams:
    • identify PFA/PFAC supporters and engage them as champions;
    • meet with clinicians and staff to discuss issues and concerns about working with PFAs; and
    • be alert for strategic opportunities to introduce PFAC concepts and integrate them into new or ongoing initiatives.
  • Develop an advisor selection process to include an application, interview (in-person or virtual) and acceptance or regret letters.
  • Publicize PFA recruitment through admissions, welcome or discharge packets, hospital websites, social media platforms, support group meetings, community organizations, senior/community centers, religious organizations, etc.
  • Design an effective onboarding process based on hospital policy.
  • Establish PFAC membership and meeting guidelines that include size, advisor-to-staff ratio, meeting schedule, term lengths and attendance requirements.
  • Invite advisors to share their experiences and perceptions during hospital committee meetings and staff orientations.
  • Communicate the value of PFACs throughout the organization or health system. Celebrate and share success stories via the hospital website, educational television channel, community newsletters, annual reports and community assessments.

Ensure health equity in PFE

  • Consider the needs, perspectives, interests, values and beliefs of patients and families from all backgrounds in the population your organization serves.
  • Co-design more equitable systems and policies at each level of hospital care that reflect what matters most to all patients.