When Nurses Grieve

By Christine Jonas-Simpson June 27th, 2012

I watched the tears drop from my nurses’ eyes as they gently took my blood and when they hugged me goodbye at the end of their shifts. My sweet curly red-haired son died and was born still after his cord knotted when I was 37 and a half weeks pregnant – he was nearly 6 pounds. My nurses and family remained by my side, the specialist who induced me followed up on his day off and my family doctors cried with me at home.

I was deeply moved and comforted by my caregivers’ expressions of grief. While I was living my worst nightmare I could not help but wonder what it was like for my healthcare colleagues to grieve and bear witness to our devastating loss. As a nurse I experienced grief of my own patients as well as identified with their families’ losses – these moments transformed me.

When my son died in 2001, I could not find research on nurses’ experiences of grieving when a baby dies and how this changed them. Healthcare professional grief was and continues to be hidden and not often discussed. Given I was a nurse and a researcher, I decided [...] continue the story

Congratulations Dear 16 Year Old Me

Canadian produced Melanoma video tops the prestigious Webby Awards The number one patient story of the year, the video “Dear 16 Year Old Me” has set a new standard of storytelling by winning 2 Webby Awards, the leading international awards honouring excellence on the Internet.

The David Cornfield Melanoma Fund production, “Dear 16 Year Old Me”, won for Best Online Video – Public Service and Activism, and for Best Copywriting. It has been seen almost 7 million times, in 150 countries, and in 5 languages. No other patient story in living memory has come close to this level of global impact.

The video is by melanoma patients who, through reflection, tell their 16 year old self some life lessons that can make an important difference in their lives.

It’s a milestone in the history of healthcare when a patient story, told by real patients, outdraws a Hollywood celebrity doctor. It’s a story that can inform practice, change patient behaviour and improve public health.

This film wasn’t supported with a mass media campaign and major sponsors. It won the hearts of millions with an authentic narrative that engages its viewers with its honesty

“Dear 16 Year Old Me” proves that the stories of real people can change [...] continue the story

What Ontario can learn from Kingston General Hospital’s authentic patient-centred reforms

By Cathy Fooks, CEO The Change Foundation “The change that’s needed won’t come easily or quickly to healthcare. And it won’t come at all if we don’t change the debate, change the practice, 

change the experience.” – The Change Foundation Strategic Plan, 2010-2013

Three years ago I lost my Mom to cancer.  She died at home which was her wish but the struggle we had in dealing with multiple aspects of Ontario’s healthcare system shocked me.  I had worked for over twenty years in the healthcare world and came from a family full of health professionals and yet I could not “navigate” the system effectively for my mother. Why did it have to be like this?

For me it was a burning platform for The Change Foundation to focus its efforts and resources on improving the patient and caregiver experience.

So in 2011, The Foundation’s signature Meeting of the Minds event gathered 50 participants including — health system leaders, patients and caregivers, and care providers — to discuss How to ACE the patient experience?   Our dynamic keynote speaker, Barbara Balik of The Institute of Healthcare Improvement (IHI) came to share her experience in working with organizations that are serious about creating patient-centred care.  Balik says the [...] continue the story

Can the patient voice design emerging healthcare technology?

Is the patient voice going to be the essential driver in the design of new healthcare technologies and mobile apps? Or will design by healthy (non-patient) people overlook the lessons learned from reflecting upon patient narratives?

The upcoming Healthcare Experience Design Conference  is going to take a look at these questions from many angles. Amy Cueva, Founder, Chief Experience Officer, and Healthcare Principal at organizer Mad*Pow has an informative blog.

Read more here.

Pumping up the volume on patient voices | Health Council of Canada

Originally posted on the Health Council of Canada Blog.

Patient Commando Executive Director Zal Press writes a guest column for the Health Council of Canada blog as part of the release of the Health Council of Canada report  “How do Sicker Canadians with Chronic Disease Rate the Health Care System? ” Get the report here and watch their patient story video – a familiar face included.

 

I’m taking a biologic for Crohn’s disease. And I’m a lucky guy – my $30,000 annual tab is picked up by my wife’s benefit plan. But in five years, when I hit 65, we’ll be off her plan and I’ll be transferred to the Ontario Drug Benefit Plan.

I’m already fretting over what that future will bring. Will the continued financial strain on the health system foreclose on my access to this medication, and instead force a body-altering operation because it will cost the system less in the short run?

And will this decision be made by a cost-benefit analyst rather than by a collaborative agreement between me and my doctors?

US insurance companies have required multiple step therapies before approving many biologics, resulting in multi-year delays. In Ontario, the Exceptional Access Program has fallen behind in processing applications. The population [...] continue the story