Southcoast Health Patient Family Advisory Council seeks new members

NEW BEDFORD, Mass. – The Southcoast Health Patient and Family Advisory Council (PFAC), which provides a platform for improved communication between patients, families and staff and serves as an advisory resource to administration and trustees, is looking to add new members.

The PFAC’s goal is to act as a “consumer advisory group” and serve as a link between Southcoast Health and the communities it serves. The PFAC is a voice for patients and families about the way in which care is delivered and to discuss concerns about care, quality and access.

“The opportunity to collaborate with dedicated members of our community truly fosters Southcoast Health leaders’ understanding of how our patients and their loved ones experience care across our system,” said Darcy Lackie, Southcoast Health Chief Experience Officer, who has served as PFAC Co-Chair since 2013. “Through shared insights and perspectives, the council enhances our organization’s efforts to keep our patients at the center of all that we do, and supports our mission of promoting the optimal health and well-being of the individuals in the communities we serve.”

The PFAC was created to champion family participation in hospital care and decision-making, and also to gather information about significant issues and trends to be considered by hospital administration and staff in its policy-making, program development and staff training and education. It also advises on community-based education needs to better inform the public about how to play an active role in their healthcare.

“The complexity of today’s healthcare systems makes it very difficult to navigate if you don’t have an existing understanding of the industry,” said Kathleen Campanirio, Community Co-chair, who has served on Southcoast Health’s PFAC since its inception in 2010. “Our goal at Southcoast PFAC is to improve access to healthcare so that families and patients are able to navigate on their own through the system.”

PFACs are required at all hospitals in Massachusetts. Southcoast Health’s PFAC consists of community and hospital members, with the goal of at least 50 percent of the representation coming from the community. The PFAC is co-chaired by a community member, such as a former patient or a family member, and by someone from Southcoast Health, such as an administrator, trustee or physician.

The PFAC meets on the last Monday of every month, except in May and December. For more information on PFAC and to apply to become a member, call 508-973-5068 or download a form on our website.