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Buzzin’ for better health at the CEAN Forum


Above photo: CEAN members enjoyed the day sharing their insight, networking and learning from VCH leadership and other CEAN members.

While some of us may love sleeping in on a Saturday morning, downtown Vancouver was buzzing with energy on the morning of Saturday, April 21, 2018 as 45 individuals gathered for the bi-annual CEAN Forum, which was held at the Simon Fraser Wosk Centre for Dialogue. 

Since 2003, VCH's Community Engagement Advisory Network (CEAN) forums have brought together VCH leaders and CEAN members to discuss and dialogue on issues of importance for the public and VCH. Earlier this year, VCH began a journey to change its culture by creating new shared values. The driver for this change was a survey sent to all employees to ask about how people felt about their work environment. This gave VCH's Community Engagement Team a buzzworthy idea to use the CEAN Forum to discuss which values patient and family advisors feel should influence and guide the day-to-day operations and work of VCH staff.

Our shared values

During the first half of the day Darcia Pope, Vice President & Chief Transformation Officer, and Parm Hari, Executive Director, People & Culture gave engaging presentations on VCH's current transformation and values work, and provided attendees with insight on what is guiding leadership and other staff at VCH through its transformation. They spoke candidly about their own personal experiences in navigating the healthcare system, which attendees appreciated hearing.  Afterwards, they, along with Sarah Payne, Director, Transformation and Office of Strategy Management, lead CEAN members through a values exercise where they delved further into how shared values should be expressed and what they would look like if they guided the delivery of healthcare at VCH.

“I enjoyed meeting with CEAN members and hearing about their experiences with the health care system," said Pope, “ It really allowed me to reflect on why I first became involved in improving healthcare delivery and it was a great opportunity to discuss the values that will support our commitment to improving the patient and family experience moving forward.  We are very lucky to have passionate and committed patient advisors engaging with our health authority to improve the delivery of care."

From this morning discussion it became apparent that all seek healthcare services and a system that has, at its core, the principle of caring which encourages learning, and delivers the results that patients and families need.

Commitment to Patient-Centric Care

After lunch, CEAN members heard directly from Belinda Boyd, Community Engagement Leader and Saori Yamamoto, CEAN Coordinator on how the dedication of CEAN members and their commitment to strengthening engagement at VCH has made an impact to the programs and services VCH delivers. CEAN members were also given the opportunity to speak to the larger group about the meaningful contributions they have made by sitting on VCH advisory committees and being involved in projects. Time was also spent gathering feedback from CEANs on how teams can best support them while they are placed on committees and projects. With over 290 CEAN members and 166 placements on advisory committees, this was a really relevant exercise. Using this feedback, the CE Team will create a tool for staff working with advisors on an ongoing basis.

Time was also taken to pay tribute to a CEAN member who recently passed away from cancer. Katherine Willett had been actively engaged and dedicated to bringing the patient voice to VCH for the past several years, using her lived experience to help VCH design better quality programs and services which are patient and family centred. Her life and passion served as a reminder to all that patients and family members are an integral part of the healthcare system and should be given the opportunity to participate in its planning and delivery. 

Quite fittingly, there was a bee theme at this Forum, as CEANs certainly proved that they have been busy as bees working to help create patient-centric services at VCH.  We hope they continue buzzin', providing their valuable insight on how we can make healthcare better for all.

SOURCE: Buzzin’ for better health at the CEAN Forum ( )
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