While patients and families will always be the first priority in healthcare, workers also need to be supported as a result of what they experience in their profession. Peer support programs, where healthcare workers can discuss their experiences in a non-judgmental environment with colleagues who can relate to what they are going through, are now seen as a useful approach to helping them cope. A number of support programs are emerging, as healthcare organizations are beginning to recognize that this is an appropriate and valuable service for their staff.
This section is a key resource for organizations who are planning a peer support program, as it gives clear explanations about what is and is not privileged information, and how best to strengthen confidentiality. It was informed by a team of lawyers, physicians and a patient advocate who had extensive experience with the issue of confidentiality in healthcare.