More than 40 from Christiana Care attend Conference on Patient and Family Centered Care

More than 40 from Christiana Care attend Conference on Patient and Family Centered Care

michael gervay
Patient and family adviser Michael Gervay shares the emotional story of his father’s end of life at Christiana Care’s Wilmington Hospital, and how the outstanding communication between clinical staff and his family helped to make the decision to remove his father from life support less difficult than it might have been. Gervay accompanied ICU staff to the 5th International Conference on Patient and Family Centered Care, where they presented on how patient and family centered care practices can be integrated into a hospital intensive care unit.

More than 40 Christiana Care nurses, physicians, staff and senior leaders attended the 5th International Conference on Patient- and Family-Centered Care in Washington, D.C., June 4-6.

“The energy and passion from the Christiana Care team during the conference was incredible,” said Diane Talarek, RN, MA, NE-BC, senior vice president, Patient Care Services and chief nursing officer. “Those who attended the conference came back with many ideas on how to move the culture to a true partnership with our patients and their families.”

The Wilmington Hospital ICU presentation “The Road Less Traveled: An Adult Combined Medical and Surgical Intensive Care Unit’s Journey to Integrate Patient and Family into the Health Care Team” attracted a standing-room-only audience. Michael Benninghoff, D.O., medical director; Donna Casey, RN, nurse manager; Joanne Garcia, RN; Dannette Mitchell, BSN, RN, BC; and patient/family adviser Michael Gervay explained how families are included in hourly rounding, interdisciplinary rounds and nurse-manager rounds, and how the team successfully lifted restrictions on ICU visiting hours.

Video: Patient and Family Centered Care in the ICU Demonstrations

Michael Gervay, whose involvement with the health care team during his father’s end of life care at the ICU helped to propel many of these initiatives, shared an emotional story that underscored why partnering with families throughout the continuum of care is so important.

“The excellent communication with the hospital staff made dealing my father’s end of life so much easier for my mother and me ,” Gervay said.

Dannette Mitchell, BSN, RN, CCRN, Paula Tomanovich, BSN, RN, BC, Jo Melson, MSN, RN, FNP-BC, Shelley Nix, senior patient representative, and Penelope Seiple, MSN, RN, NE-BC, vice president of Patient Care Services, presented the poster “One Voice: One Hospital’s Journey to Transform Inside and Out by Incorporating Patients and Families into the Health Care Team.”

Joyce Swisher, RN, and Mindy Neff, RN, MSN, CPNP, CPCE, presented the poster “Women’s Health/Pediatrics Family Advisory Council: The Birth of a Council,” which shared accomplishments and lessons learned from the Women’s and Children’s patient advisory council.

Photo gallery: 5th International Conference on Patient and Family Centered Care

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Reactions from the conference

“I was so impressed by the turnout of patient advisers and the tremendous benefits that their inclusion has brought to so many facilities. It’s very empowering to give patients their voice. To encourage them and their families to be completely aware and involved in their health care is definitely the correct way to provide health care. To quote one of the speakers: ‘Nothing about me without me’”

—Mary Bradley, RN, PCCN

“Tiffany Christensen gave a presentation on ‘A Bed’s Eye View of Patient and Family Centered Care.’ She was born with cystic fibrosis and has had two lung transplants. She highlighted the difference between a ‘patient and family centered care’ approach and having a good bedside manner. I found myself asking whether I was too focused on the latter approach. Some of the tips she gave were to refrain from the impulse to start with solutions, to base strategies on data and assessments rather than opinions, and to build cohesion and to have a shared vision with the patients and their families”

—Annie Paul, LCSW

“’Patient and family centered care is not about being nice, but ‘collaboration for delivery of safe care.’ It all comes down to doing the right thing.”

—Bob Onyango, RN

“Christiana Care’s commitment to this patient care model was evident by the presence of virtually every discipline throughout our hospital system. I felt privileged to have this opportunity to collaborate with colleagues and other experts in this arena, and I am excited to bring back tools and resources to allow Christiana Care’s journey to continue, as an institution and specifically in Perioperative Services.”

—Patricia M. Moore, M.D.

“What an amazing conference! The speakers provided a clear vision on what patient and family centered care should look and feel like. While many may already approach patients and families in what we think is a positive way, there is still so much we can do to enhance the total patient/family experience. I left the conference with a renewed sense of motivation and interest in being a part of this positive vision. While a team approach will be the key to success, we can all begin as individuals to model the values of respect and dignity, communication and collaboration with our patients.”

—Pauline Cousineau RN, MSN, ANP-C

“For me, this conference confirmed the need for patient and family centered Care from a global perspective. I learned a lot from many of the sessions, but in particular about the payment/reimbursement coming down the line from CMS relative to Medicare/Medicaid.”

—Carmen Stine, RN

“Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and Sloan-Kettering believe that residents are the front lines for patient and family centered care.”

—Michael G. Benninghoff, MS, D.O.

“Some of the pearls of wisdom that I brought back from the conference included: ‘Evaluate what the experience is like for the patient—not for the staff.’ ‘We provide care from our own perspectives. Learn to tap into patients’ perspectives and provide care from theirs.’ ‘Always focus on the patient. [When the patient is present,] don’t talk to other staff instead of the patient. It makes the patient feel insignificant.”

—Donna Casey, BSN, MA, RN, FABC, NE-BC

“This conference refocused and reinforced for me that all of us at Christiana Care, regardless of our roles, have an opportunity and a responsibility to put patients and their families at the center of what we do”

—Margarita Rodriguez-Duffy, MSW CAVS