MAYO University Hospital (MUH) is pioneering a process that aims to recruit 20 patient experience advisors in the coming months.
MUH will be the first in the country to undertake such a venture and it is based on the Canadian Patient and Family Engagement Model.
This is part of an overall hospital plan to establish an ongoing culture of quality improvement and to enhance safety and quality for patients and their families.
The patient is the expert on the quality of the service received, and on how their illness impacts on their daily life and that of their family. This expertise can provide the hospital with a wealth of information.
This approach will result in the hospital having a pool of people who can share first hand their experience of being a patient/family member, and from that experience can advise the hospital on what works or doesn’t work from the patient’s point of view.
Commenting, Catherine Donohoe, general manager, MUH, said: “The ultimate goal of having patient experience advisors is to bring the perspectives and lived experiences of patients and families directly into the planning, delivery and evaluation of care. For example, if the hospital was making a change to a service or a policy, patient experience advisors that have used the service could bring their experience on how the service or policy could be best developed to meet the needs of patients.”
Patient experience advisors will also sit on key committees within the hospital to bring their experience to these areas. They will also share their experiences of care with student doctors, nurses and other staff, and therefore enhance the quality of health professional education.
Who can be a patient experience advisor? You can be a patient experience advisor if you or a family member has received care at Mayo University Hospital in the last five years. Specific qualifications are not needed for the role; however there will be a screening process. The most important requirement is the ability to share your experience constructively, in order to help improve the quality of care for all patients and family members. The hospital will provide the training and support required. The time commitment on average would be approximately four hours per month.
Mayo University Hospital is holding an information evening on patient and family engagement on October 25 at 7.30 p.m. in the lecture hall of the hospital. If you are interested in finding out more about this exciting initiative, please come along or contact Séamus Moran on (094) 9021733, ext. 3091/3095.