Patient and Family Advisory Councils (PFACs) serve as one primary way for Mass General to realize the opening words of its mission, “Guided by the needs of our patients and their families . . ."
What is a PFAC?
A PFAC is a committee made up of patients, family members and health care professionals who meet regularly and work in mutually beneficial partnership to:
- Integrate patient/family voices in the development and shaping of programs, services and initiatives
- Enhance focus on continuous improvement of care experiences
What do Patient/Family Advisors do?
- Participate in regular PFAC meetings
- Participate in committees and initiatives across the organization
- Review and provide feedback on educational materials and resources
- Provide input into a variety of strategic initiatives, facility design and development of new services and offerings
- Participate in staff training initiatives
- Recognize care teams and staff who demonstrate excellence in providing optimal experiences
- Share stories about care experiences
Mass General has several PFACs including the General PFAC, which spans services and settings, as well as service and department-specific advisory councils. For more information about Mass General PFACs, please see the 2019-2020 Mass General PFAC Annual Report.
In the Voice of Some PFAC Members:
- "I’ve had the—I’ll call it a privilege—to be involved in some pretty high-end meetings on topics that normally a person not trained in the world of medicine would not be in, but my only role, my only expertise, was the voice of the patient."
- "When I was in a room with people who are running that department, they took me seriously. They listened to what I had to say in terms of representing myself as a person, as a patient and, then, representing other patients. It felt amazing to be able to have that voice...I think it speaks volumes to the culture that has been created here."
- "We’ve done a lot of stuff together on the PFAC there. We have lots of discussions about the littlest detail, from the parking garage attendance to the receptionists, to the ambassadors, to the patient’s bill of health, to the caregivers. And I think it all makes a difference. Every one of those things makes your experience here either great or not great."
- "[PFAC has] been wonderful, and it has provided so many different opportunities for me as a patient to assist me in my journey into coming to terms with my disease."
Information for patients/family members interested in becoming an advisor
PFAC annual reports
Mass General Patient Experience
The Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems Hospital Survey (HCAHPS) provides insights into what inpatients discharged from Mass General are saying about their experience.