IHA Patient and Family Engagement

Effective patient and family engagement is a major focus of numerous public and private efforts as manifested in a variety of assessment, performance improvement and reimbursement initiatives, e.g., CMS' Hospital Engagement Network and Value-based Purchasing, Leapfrog, NPSF, and others. Many healthcare facilities, along with other state hospital associations, are integrating Patient Family Advisory Councils (PFAC) into their organizational structures as one means for enhancing access to, and understanding of, this critical relationship. Ideally, PFACs are regarded as collaborative partners, whose insights guide policy and quality improvements, while also serving as cultural champions in their healthcare system's transformation journey.

Below are some resources to assist member organizations in moving towards a culture of patient-centered care in which PFACs are viewed as an essential element of the care environment and an integral part of the decision-making process.

IHA Patient and Family Advisory Council (PFAC) Core Principles
This IHA resource is designed to share consensus-based tenets from literature review and implementation experiences to assist members with their PFAC efforts. This document may be used by healthcare providers as a platform for discussion to elicit further insights that align with their internal patient and family engagement efforts.

PFAC Toolkits

Road Map to the Successful Implementation of Patient and Family Advisory Councils - Developed in 2015, by the MCHC Clinical Services Patient and Family Advisory Council (PFAC) Committee. This guidance document explores best practices for the development of PFACs across the country and locally in the metropolitan Chicago healthcare marketplace.

Partnering with Patients and Families to Accelerate Improvement - A tool offered by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) to guide healthcare organizations in the development of a PFAC.

A Toolkit for Creating Patient and Family Advisory Councils: A Step by Step Guide - Developed by BJC Health Care, this toolkit contains a wealth of resources to assist you in implementing a PFAC within your organization.

Creating Patient and Family Advisory Councils - Developed by the Institute for Patient and Family Centered Care (IPFFC), this toolkit contains a wealth of resources to assist you in implementing a PFAC within your organization.

Pediatric PFAC Resources

Creating a Patient and Family Advisory Council: A Toolkit for Pediatric Practices - Developed by the National Institute for Children's Health Quality (NICHQ), this toolkit contains a wealth of resources to assist you in implementing a PFAC within your organization.

Patient Family Engagement Resources

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) - A guide to help patients, families, and health professionals work together as partners to promote improvements in care.

Beryl Institute - Global community of practice dedicated to improving the patient experience through collaboration and shared knowledge. The Beryl Institute's patient experience boards and councils bring valuable insights to guide patient experience improvement efforts.

HRET - A Leadership Resource for Patient and Family Engagement Strategies.

Institute for Patient- and Family-Centered Care (IPFCC) - Provides essential leadership to advance the understanding and practice of patient- and family-centered care. By promoting collaborative, empowering relationships among patients and healthcare professionals, IPFCC facilitates patient- and family-centered change in all settings where individuals and families receive care and support.

Planetree - Partners with healthcare organizations around the world and across the care continuum to transform how care is delivered. Powered by over 50,000 focus groups with patients, families, and staff, and over 35 years of experience working with healthcare organizations, Planetree is uniquely positioned to represent the patient voice and advance how professional caregivers engage with patients and families.

The Joint Commission Transitions of Care (ToC) Portal - This portal is a valuable source of information from The Joint Commission and other healthcare organizations, related to the topic of transitions of care (the movement of patients between various health care settings).

Measuring Outcomes and Success

Center for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS) - Partnership for Patients (PfP) Strategic Vision Roadmap for Person and Family Engagement (PFE).

National Examples of Patient and Family Advisory Councils in Action

University of Wisconsin Health in Madison, WI is nationally recognized for its commitment to patient- and family-centered care. Approximately 180 Patient and Family Advisors are actively engaged in improvement efforts, partnering with staff throughout UW Health. Their contributions span numerous Patient and Family Advisory Councils and dozens of work groups and committees.