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Professional Framework

Patient engagement and experience at the BC Cancer Agency is underpinned by a professional framework comprised of types of engagement and dimensions of patient care.

The BC Cancer Agency Framework for Patient Engagement and Experience is comprised of:

  • the International Association of Public Participation (IAP2) Spectrum of Public Participation
  • the Picker Eight Dimensions of Patient-Centred Care

IAP2 Spectrum of Public Participation

The Public Participation Spectrum was developed by the International Association for Public Participation (IAP2). This tool is used by the BC Ministry of Health and many health and public organizations across Canada and around the world. The Public Participation Spectrum defines five types of engagement:

  • Inform: “Informing” is a one-way relationship from health professional to patient.  The patient is receiving information. For example, health professionals educate patients and families about treatment side effects. 
  • Consult: “Consulting” is a one-way relationship from patient to health professional. The patient and families are providing feedback. For example, patients and families complete a survey or comment card about their experience.
  • Involve: “Involving” is a two-way relationship. The health professional and patients and families have a conversation. They work together to understand each other. They may brainstorm alternatives and approaches that work for everyone. For example, health professionals take survey results to a group of patients and families for review and discussion.
  • Collaborate: “Collaborating” is an interconnected relationship. All members of a group collaborate to explore and implement solutions. For example, health professionals, patients and families develop ways to address barriers that prevent patients from accessing services.
  • Empower: “Empowering” means giving power to patients and families to identify issues, determine solutions and implement action. For example, patients and families want to host an event for other patients and families; health professionals help organize a location and speakers.

Picker Eight Dimensions of Patient-Centred Care 

The eight dimensions are:

  • patients’ preferences
  • emotional support
  • physical comfort
  • information and education
  • continuity and transition
  • coordination of care
  • access to care
  • family and friends

These dimensions were developed in the 1980s by researchers from Harvard Medical School on behalf of Picker Institute and The Commonwealth Fund. 

Building from literature and a range of focus groups and interviews with discharged patients, family members, physicians and non-physician hospital staff, the researchers defined seven primary dimensions of patient-centered care. When these were renamed the Picker Principles of Patient-Centered Care in 1987, an eighth was added: Access to care. 

The development of the dimensions is documented in the book Through the Patient’s Eyes, published in 1993. 

The BC Cancer Agency has added a ninth dimension of patient-centered care: safety. 

SOURCE: Professional Framework ( )
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