Island Health’s Patient Care Quality Office (PCQO) is the central point of contact for patients and their families to bring forward compliments and concerns regarding care they have received. Through the PCQO, Island Health is able to learn and make improvement to care services and delivery and patient safety based on patient feedback and experience. The PCQO also strives to help clients find resolution and rebuild confidence and trust in Island Health. In 2015, island Health’s Patient Care Quality Office began a collaborative co-design process to gather feedback from patients, families and key stakeholders on the PCQO process and our services. The aim was to improve processes and services for clients, as a mechanism to improve overall feedback ands safety in the Island Health system. Past PCQO clients provided detailed feedback on their experiences in engaging with our office, the project culminated in a series of recommended improvements to the PCQO structure and process along with powerful video
messages from patients and families. Feedback included patients feeling confused and frustrated with multiple points of contact within the PCQO and a lack of locally based supports. Furthermore, the PCQO faced challenges in meeting legislated timelines to respond to concerns within 40 business days, leading to further frustration from patients and families in the process, and resulting in delays to patient safety and experience improvements that could be gleaned from individual files. In July 2018, the PCQO re-structured its department based on the feedback from patients.
In spring 2019, the next phase of the project began, with the creation of a Patient Advisory Group dedicated to the PCQO. Patient partners from across the Island meet regularly to learn about the PCQO and make suggested improvements to our process. The first key project the team worked on in collaboration with the PCQO team is our “Words Matter Project”. The Words Matter project is aimed at identifying and improving PCQO written responses to patients and families. Feedback from clients indicated an opportunity for Island Health to embrace a more personalized and empathetic approach. Now in a pilot phase, the resource guide will help to modify responses to patients resulting in increased resolutions and re-establishing trust in the health care system for patients and families.