“Remember that what gets talked about and how it gets talked about determines what will happen. Or won’t happen. And that we succeed or fail, gradually then suddenly, one conversation at a time.” Susan Scott, Fierce Leadership: A Bold Alternative to the Worst “Best” Practices of Business Today

 

Hello and welcome to Partners in Health | Conversations!

I’ve been involved in healthcare for more than 30 years.  During my high school years, I worked part time as a nursing attendant in a long-term care facility. Years later as a young mom and Registered Nurse I worked in the emergency department, ICU, oncology, and palliative care. For the last 11 years, my role as a healthcare consultant and board member allows me to continue contributing to the system I have grown to understand, and for the most part, respect. In all those years and with the places my career has taken me, one ingredient has remained consistent. Whether as a nursing attendant, volunteer, a registered nurse, an organizational leader or a management consultant, the rich conversations I’ve been privileged to participate in have provided me with a unique and invaluable perspective about the complexity of the health systems we rely on. Hundreds and possibly thousands of conversations have offered insights into how the system should work, could work, and perhaps more importantly, how it shouldn’t work! And, because many of those conversations have been largely left unheard by decision makers, I’ve decided that it’s time to change that.

I have had the privilege of working alongside physicians, nurses, and other health professionals in clinical settings, leaders and executives, researchers, regulators, academics, politicians, bureaucrats, business leaders, and more. Partners in Health | Conversations will allow me to provide a platform to discuss and document important conversations and share those with all of you. I believe that together we can strengthen our collective knowledge about the system and participate in transformative change by sharing critical insights that have yet to be heard.

Each Thursday evening, I will share personal opinions and experiences by posting in “Reflections.” Readers will have the opportunity to comment which will allow us to continue the conversation. Once or twice a month, “articles” offering a deeper dive into issues of interest, concern, or urgency will be added.

Our first topic in the “Articles” section is entitled Person-Centered Care in Alberta: Physicians discuss context, challenges, and choices.  This is the first article in a three-part series where in Part 1 we focus on person-centered care from the perspective of 4 practicing physicians who practice in diverse settings across the province. Part 2 continues the conversation as the same physicians talk about system defects and offer potential solutions. In Part 3 we will partner with the organization “IMAGINE: Citizens Collaborating for Health” https://imaginecitizens.ca/ to explore the views of Albertans who expect to contribute to decisions about their health and system transformation.

Part 1 is available now. You’ll hear from 4 physicians I interviewed early in 2020 shortly before the COVID crisis took hold. They talk about how they each characterize person-centered care in context to their own medical practices. They share insights into the health system in Alberta alongside some examples of the barriers to delivering person-centered care they’ve experienced.

So again, welcome. I look forward to sharing with and learning from each of you. Here we go!

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