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Patients talk patients: Workshop on how to effectively engage - Part 1

In complex times, the simplest solutions are often the most effective. By sharing simple ideas that we have found to work well in engaging and partnering with patients and families, we aim to empower and give confidence to health and social services leaders. Partnering with patients directly is an excellent example of an adaptive approach to leadership. This practice is gaining ground across the country; however, as an established and implemented concept, it is currently in its infancy. 


It is time we explore what it means to engage properly, and what does the culture of a ‘engagement capable environment’ look like so that we can all work together to improve the quality and safety of care. 


This workshop was written by patients and family members with the goal of teaching anyone who wants to engage and partner effectively. It will be solely led by patients and family members. We will use simple, clear language that will facilitate stronger partnerships.  


Attendees will first learn and discuss the concepts of people centered care and patient partnership. Patient / family / caregiver partners from across Canada will share what effective engagement and partnership can look like in different care settings. They will clarify that a multitude of approaches to patient engagement and partnership are crucial.  


In breakout rooms, attendees will have the opportunity to share their experiences with engagement, their understanding of partnership – including the challenges, barriers, opportunities and solutions – and discuss approaches to supporting a culture of patient engagement and partnership. Patient partners will offer encouragement and answer questions, with the goal of inspiring attendees to step out of their comfort zones and try something different. We aim to have a patient partner in every breakout room to ensure that attendees have the opportunity to learn directly from experienced patient partners.  


In a solutions-focused approach, attendees will also learn tips and strategies on what to do when things are challenging. They will learn what they need to think about and do BEFORE engaging a patient and/or family member to ensure capacity as a ‘engagement capable environment.’  


Attendees will leave with a better understanding of the principles for effective patient engagement and partnership including strategies that they can use to help them effectively engage with patients and or family members. We are excited to show you that patients can lead and be an integral part of the team as we move together towards effective, meaningful and authentic partnership. 



Claire Gallant – Canada’s BFI QI Collaborative Project 

Duane Jackson – Patient Voices Network 

Julie Drury – Canadian Foundation for Healthcare Improvement 



Hélène Campbell – Health Standards Organization 

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