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CPSI Share                                                  
Provider; Public; Leader
3/5/2018 5:00 PM

I am greatly honored to have been asked to share the experiences I have had with The Canadian Patient Safety Institute.

I want to talk about the important role of patients in the healthcare system and I will do that through the lens of a patient, a mother, a nurse and an educator. The experiences I am about to share scope throughout my Nursing Career, my role as a Medical Device Sales Specialist, a Mother, (who stayed 41 days by her baby's bedside in the PICU), and finally as a Family Patient Partner which is part of the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit, Pediatric Critical Care Quality Improvement and Patient Safety Team.

I graduated from Nursing School in 2001 and recall when CPSI originated 2 years later. We had the same Mission: "to inspire extraordinary improvement in Patient Safety and Quality.''

Being a nurse is a beautiful and gratifying career but can also be very challenging. Having the CPSI as a reference tool is fantastic and a necessity.

 In 2013, I became a mom for the 1st time! Unfortunately, my son was born with a heart malformation called transposition of the great arteries. Although Emmanuel was born at term, he weighed only 4 pounds and was very ill. He had heart surgery at one week old and stayed in the PICU at the Montreal Children's Hospital for the first 41 days of his life. I was very impressed by every single healthcare professional who cared for my son.

Even today, people ask me if it was hard for me not to old my son until he was 30 days old and as weird as this may seem to you, I never felt bad or depressed. The MCH's staff ALWAYS asked my opinion, kept me informed, involved me in their Rounds and answered all my questions and concerns. – this is what I call family patient safety!!

For all of you wondering how my son is doing, let me confirm he is a healthy 4-year-old…The Montreal Children's Hospital make miracles happen.

Lastly, in 2017 I gladly accepted to be a Family Patient Partner/Advisor for the P-QuIPS (Pediatric Critical Care Quality Improvement and Patient Safety) Committee. This has been such a wonderful experience and such a Fantastic way for me to give back to the department who took care of my son as their own and made it possible for me to share every moment of this Life with him!

We have a multidisciplinary team made up of the Division Director, Pharmacist, Respiratory Therapist, Psychosocial Team, bedside Nurse, Nurse Manager, Simulation Program and our 2 Co-Chairs Dr. Samara Zavalkoff and PICU's Nurse Manager Maggie Ruddy.

Our mandate is to implement, within the PICU, a quality improvement and safety program that incorporates best practice and reduces potential harm by assessing, developing and implementing interprofessional care practices. We meet once a month in the PICU for 1 hour and 30 minutes.

After 1 year of being a Family Patient Partner/Advisor and as mentioned in the Canadian Guide Engaging Patients in Patient Safety, I am certain that by working collaboratively, we can more proactively identify risks, better support those involved in an incident, and help prevent similar incidents from occurring in the future. Together we can shape safe, high-quality care delivery, co-design safer care systems, and continuously improve to keep patients safe".

 I encourage all Departments to involve a Family Patient Partner on their Committee's as well as members from different disciplinary teams as this will provide a 360 overview and will certainly bring interesting points to discuss.

 After writing this, I clearly see that no matter who you are, whether a Healthcare Provider, a Patient, a Parent or a Family Patient Partner/Advisor, we can all contribute to a Safer healthcare system. Where patients will have better experiences and health outcomes.

--Sandra Filopoulos
Family Patient Partner/Advisor for The Montreal Children's Hospital Pediatric Intensive Care Unit, Pediatric Critical Care Quality Improvement and Patient Safety Team