Since its launch in 2011, the Family Leadership Program has grown beyond its initial framework with over 170 Family Leaders (FL). Holland Bloorview has a well-developed Client and Family Integrated Care structure that anchors partnership within the Carmen et al (2013) engagement model. This framework is integrated vertically and horizontally across the organization with clients/families driving a wide-range of hospital innovations and grounding the conversation of partnership into the heart of all that we do.

In 2016 the hospital established a formalized committee, the Family Leader Accreditation Group where staff and FL partnered equally to meet, update and share quality and safety initiatives as part of the accreditation preparedness process. The organization was driven to partner more deeply, exceed compliance with Accreditation Canada’s standards, build internal capacity to drive change and create innovative partnerships that had meaningful and significant impact on care. The 17 FL were trained through the Patient Safety Education Program. This partnership was anchored in the belief that providing knowledge and skills would ensure families had an equally knowledgeable voice in patient safety.

The impact has continued post accreditation with FL leading the engagement process for families/youth/children in the Quality Improvement Plan. This new model of partnership shifts the conversation in ways that are more meaningful and generative.

This vertical and horizontal integration builds capacity among clients/families/staff  and provides a foundation for other organizations, sectors and health systems to model in their approach to improve, transform and provide quality and safe care with families as experts in their care and full partners in safety.

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