On a New Frontier of Patient Engagement | Preface

Kathy Kastner: Thinking, Talking, Asking

Our good friend Kathy Kastner over at Ability4life.com has been trying to make sense out of doctor/patient communication for a long time. How often do people not take medication properly because they don’t understand the instructions? How often do patients simply forget what a doctor has said because they can’t listen as fast as a doctor can talk? Imagine how important sensitivity to communications needs to be when a highly educated doctor speaks to adults with 8th grade literacy, or immigrants with limited English, or seniors with failing memories, or teenagers with bursting libidos. Kathy’s been busy producing a series of videos and she describes the objectives in her own words: In between doctor’s appointments, we patients live our lives, and a ‘one size fits all’ rarely applies to daily health regimes. It’s in our own best interest to ensure we’ve negotiated a schedule we can follow. With my ‘think about it, talk about it, ask about it’ campaign I use real life examples to help kick start that process.

View Kathy’s Youtube Channel here http://www.youtube.com/user/kathykastner

Humorous Healing | The Annex Gleaner

When you’re 29 years old, newly married, and suddenly diagnosed with an incurable disease, it’s hard to find things to laugh about.

That’s what happened to Zal Press more than 30 years ago. After he was diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease, friends and family started treating him differently. When they were around him, they were around him, they were all deeply concerned and they could never act casually. He was no longer a ‘person’; he became a ‘patient,’

Like most patients, he just did whatever the doctor told him, hoping the problem would be solved. “Just give me a pill so I can get on with my life,” said Press, reflecting on how he felt back then.

But after obeying doctors’ orders and being compliant for so long, Press stopped being passive. He began asking questions, he started looking Crohn’s Disease critically. In short, he took his healthcare into his own hands.

Today, Press is trying to encourage other patients to do the same with Patient Commando, the entertainment company he founded.

Located in the Bloor and Bathurst area, Patient Commando’s mission is “getting patients engaged with their own healthcare,” according to Press.

The company does this through live theatre, public speaking, and humour therapy workshops, giving [...] continue the story

Partnering with patients to improve care | HIROC News

Several recent news items point to an interest in Canadian healthcare providers partnering with patients to heighten patient safety and healthcare.

Rather than providers positioning as the experts dictating interventions, some are looking to patients for their perspective on their own care and the larger system.

At the Saskatoon Health Region, senior managers are conducting weekly walkarounds where they engage front-line staff, patients and their families in dialogue about patient-safety issues.

The goal is to heighten the culture of safety through a conversation identifying issues and solutions, and it’s working, says vice-president of clinical and operation support services Sandra Blevins.

“We have quite lively discussions around care aspects, and educate patients about their role in patient safety.

“The culture shift is starting to happen,” she adds.

On June 20, Barbara Balik, a senior faculty member at the Institute for Health Information and CEO of Common Fire Healthcare Consulting, delivers a keynote in Toronto on the importance of partnering with patients and families.

In an earlier interview with Axiom News, Balik highlighted the value of those partnerships in light of the Excellent Care for All Act, noting they can contribute to a better designed system for effective cross-continuum care.

“If we partner with patients and families on very (aspect of [...] continue the story

Patient Commando Speaks to The Ottawa Hospital

Three times a year The Ottawa Hospital (TOH) and Leadership Development Institute (LDI) bring together approximately 450 executives, directors, managers, supervisors and physician department and division heads.  Each of these gatherings provide leaders with inspiration, information, and skill building, centred on fostering a culture aimed at achieving top 10% in quality and patient safety in North America.

Central to this mission is the patient and family experience. Patients communicate directly with leaders about what matters to them and how leaders and front line care providers can make a difference.  This is complemented with practical skills and tools that leaders can apply in practice.

Two weeks ago TOH hosted one of their triannual leadership events.  We were honoured to see Zal Press, Executive Director of Patient Commando invited to present: Patient Engagement in the Journey – A Patient’s Perspective