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The Patients’ Association of Canada helps Ontario’s board members adopt the Patient Perspective

Dec-05-11

Toronto, ON, Dec 5, 2011 -- The Patients' Association of Canada (PAC) is bringing the patient perspective to the governance level in Ontario’s healthcare boards. The association was recently awarded a $92,500 grant from The Ontario Trillium Foundation for a project titled ‘Enhancing the Patient Voice in Ontario’s Health Care Boards’ which will bring together board members and PAC volunteers for the common goal of strengthening the patient perspective in board deliberations.

“In many public discussions about health care, patients’ interests are represented by professionals, disease-based organizations, researchers, or policy makers, who have their own points of view that are not the same as those of patients,” says PAC president Sholom Glouberman. “Bringing a patient perspective to decision making bodies is a critical step in the engagement of patients in the system.”

Board Members and PAC Volunteers who join the collaboration will be able to access a number of engagement tools including an information line, web-based and in-person venues for peer-to-peer networking, and a comprehensive online library of resources related to governance and patient engagement. PAC will also hold three mini-conferences in different regions of Ontario.

The project will culminate in 2012 with a one-day conference to review what participants have gained and to consider opportunities for future patient engagement projects. This project is in response to the growing movement of concerned patients and providers wanting to enhance the patient voice in healthcare in order to improve the patient experience. Our current health care system was created in the 1880s to respond to acute communicable diseases that were causing the majority of deaths. Because the treatment of these diseases was based on scientific testing and straightforward antidotes, there was little need for patient involvement. The very success of that health care system has meant that today most people die of complex chronic conditions where the solutions are less straightforward and patient involvement is critical.

About the Ontario Trillium Foundation (www.otf.ca)

A leading grant-maker in Canada, the Ontario Trillium Foundation strengthens the capacity of the voluntary sector through investments in community-based initiatives. An agency of the Government of Ontario, OTF builds healthy and vibrant communities.

For more information, please contact:

Christina Spencer
(416) 785-2500 ext. 2472
christina.spencer@patientsassociation.ca

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