Patient Advisory Councils (PACs) are groups of patients that meet once a month at the Family Health Center to provide feedback on various initiatives happening at the clinic and partner with clinic staff to work on making improvements. The purpose of the PAC is to help the FHC move towards patient-centered care by acknowledging and placing a high value on the patient voice.
Currently, the FHC has two PACs (English and Spanish speaking groups) where patients help us improve care experience and quality of care by lending their perspective.Our current goal with the PACs is to move beyond simply using the PAC as a source of information by encouraging them to lead their own QI initiatives.
Working with a single provider, the PAC sent letters written from the patient perspective and personally signed by the provider to half of the eligible patients who were overdue for a mammogram (the other half serving as a control). Of the 10 patients who received a letter, 40% received a mammogram e-referral meanwhile zero percent of the 9 patients who did not receive a letter received a mammogram e-referral. Using this information the PAC will determine what to do next and this will conclude the PAC’s first PDSA cycle.
Having the PAC take a leadership role in Quality Improvement initiatives has really shown to be an effective way to engage patients and by working on data-driven projects we can see how involving patients can have a positive impact on practice improvement.