Update to phone lines at our Birchmount and General Hospitals: If calling through Birchmount main line (416-495-2400), add “7” when dialing an extension. If calling through General main line (416-438-2911), add “8” when dialing an extension.

Patient and Family Advisors

Patient and Family Advisors (PFAs) play an important role at Scarborough Health Network, and are key to our philosophy of patient and family centred care.

These volunteer advisors have either been a patient at one of our three hospitals, or a family member of a patient — and they have powerful insights and ideas. They use their experiences at our hospital to help us to develop and promote hospital policies, programs and practices that directly impact patient care and services.

Patient and Family Advisors support many different programs, initiatives and teams throughout our hospital. Here are some of the ways that they are involved:

  • Sharing stories: PFAs talk about their hospital experiences at meetings with staff and physicians and at other hospital events
  • Developing patient information materials: PFAs help in reviewing, renewing and creating materials and plans for improving the quality and safety of care for patients
  • Short-term projects: PFAs partner with health-care teams on specific quality improvement initiatives and projects that are meaningful and bring about positive change
  • Hospital recruitment: PFAs participate in the recruitment process for new employees and physicians

To become a PFA, you must have been a patient or family member of a patient who has received care at one of our hospitals — Birchmount, General or Centenary — within the past three years.

You don’t need to have any special credentials to become a PFA. We are looking for people who are compassionate, understanding and enthusiastic.

Here are some of the characteristics that make for a great PFA:

  • Able to use their health-care experiences to make a positive contribution to our hospital
  • Comfortable speaking in a group and collaborating with other patients and families and health-care providers
  • Good listeners
  • Respectful of others and their perspectives
  • Have a passion for helping bring about meaningful change at our hospital

The Patient and Family Advisory Council (PFAC) is a volunteer group of patients, family members and/or caregivers (PFAs) who bring a richness of diversity based on age, gender, background, culture and health experience to their role. The purpose of the PFAC is to form a collective partnership between patients and families and SHN’s leadership and departmental teams to improve quality of care and enhance the patient experience. The group meets regularly over the course of the year.

Meeting Dates for 2023/2024:

  • April 27th
  • May 25th
  • June 22nd
  • September 28th
  • October 26th
  • November 23rd
  • January 25th
  • February 22nd
  • March 28th

Apply Today

Please complete our PFA application form and submit it to Patient and Community Engagement at patientengagement@shn.ca.

Once the application form is received, candidates are reviewed by a selection committee and may be invited for a short interview. Successful applicants will need to get a vulnerable sector background check and do a two-step tuberculosis (TB) test.

Thank you for your interest in sharing your story and perspective, and helping to make a difference in the quality of the patient experience at SHN.

All new and returning volunteers will be required to comply with SHN’s updated COVID-19 Vaccination Policy, and present proof of all COVID-19 vaccination doses. Patient and Family Advisors are volunteers at SHN and will therefore need to comply with the vaccination policy as well.

Our year in review

Take a look at the impact our PFAs have had on SHN with the PFA Annual Report 2022-2023. Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, our Accreditation survey, and several redevelopment plans, our PFAs have continued to be motivated, involved, and passionate about transforming the patient experience. Their dedication and collaboration help the hospital and our staff maintain a patient-focused lens, prioritizing Patient and Family Centred Care.