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​​​The National Patient Safety Consortium, a group of more than 50 organizations, established the Integrated Patient Safety Action Plan, a shared action plan for safer healthcare. One of the plan's guiding principles is patient engagement, and one of the shared actions is a comprehensive guide for patient engagement based on evidence and best practices.

The Canadian Patient Safety Institute (CPSI), a national organization established by Health Canada to improve patient safety and quality in the Canadian healthcare system, led this work. CPSI, along with the Atlantic Health Quality and Patient Safety Collaborative, and Health Quality Ontario provided leadership and funds to develop the guide. Beginning in 2016, CPSI brought together patients, government, and organizations responsible for improving patient safety and quality at the national or provincial level on an Action Team to help develop the guide.

The Action Team included:

A consultant team (One World Inc.) supported the Action Team's work by conducting an environmental scan to identify current evidence, leading, and emerging practices, and by drafting the content of the guide. The scan offered examples of patient engagement in patient safety and quality, a targeted review of academic literature, a web scan, and interviews with key informants in the field.

Forty patients and providers from across the country participated in focus groups to help develop the guide's scope and content, including feedback on drafts. Ten patients and providers also participated in a usability pilot to validate the format and provide ideas on how to make the guide easier to use.

The guide will be regularly updated and refined as new evidence emerges and new content is developed. To contribute to the guide (e.g., with resources, leading practices, potential topics) or to be the first to know about the updates, email:

Complementary resources, including the Canadian Patient Engagement Network and the Canadian Foundation for Healthcare Improvement Patient Engagement Hub, are available here.


The many people who shaped the Engaging Patients in Patient Safety – a Canadian Guide are acknowledged and thanked here.

Action Team members who co-authored the guide: Aman Sium, Amy Lang, Andrew MacLeod, Ben Ridout, Carmella Steinke, Carol Francott, Denice Klavano, Donna Herold, Eric Wasylenko, Francois-Pierre Gavin, Gail Mackean, Ioana Popescu, Jackie Houston, Janet Bradshaw, Janet Hodder, Jennifer Rees, Jennifer Rodgers, Jessica Giesbrecht, Jessie Checkley, Judy Birdsell, Laura Williams, Laurie Thompson, Liam Bradford, Malori Keller, Maria Judd, Marie-Pascale Pomey, Nathalie Clavel, Neil McMullin, Paivi Kattilakoski, Sandi Kossey, Sharon Nettleton, Sonia Busca Owczar, Tanya MacDonald, Teagan King, Theresa Malloy-Miller, Tricia Swartz, Ursulla Aho-Glele.

Patients, families, patient partners, providers, patient engagement specialists and leaders who contributed to focus groups and pilot tests: Brandy Pollard, Calvin Young, Carl Harrison, Colin Carbo, Colleen Bryant, Crystal Chin, David Wells, Donna Davis, Dorothy Young, Esha Ray Chaudhuri, Gerry Robinson, Gloria Wilkinson, Heather Thiessen, Johanna Trimble, Judie Craig, Katherine Chan, Kathy Kovac Burns,  Kevin Belitski, Maya Charlebois, Paula March,  Rosemary Shaw, Sylvia Graham, Beatrice Campbell, Cindy Parypa, Deborah Harver, Donna-Marie Francis Bignall, Erica Bridge, Ev Nickel, Heather Purvis, Karen McCormac, Kerry Bruner, Kristine Hannah, Lisa Hawthornthwaite, Paul Perreault, Rachel Ganaden, Rosemary Sylman,  Sandi Allen, Shauna DeJong, Shirley  Gobelle, Susan Dunn Tamara Quine, Tiffany Kautz.

Contracted partners: Jacquie Dale, Lynn Chiarelli, Mireille Brosseau, Nicolas Fernandez (One World Inc); Ginger Rozmus and Faith Farthing (FinalEyes Communications) the team at Centrik Translations.

Recommended citation

Patient Engagement Action Team. 2017. Engaging Patients in Patient Safety – a Canadian Guide. Canadian Patient Safety Institute. Last modified February 2018. Available at:  

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