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Because your voice matters.

Focus Group Participant, Patient Hand Cleaning

Posted • Last updated


Open to Provincial Region, Patient partners across the province

Last updated

We know that preventing health care acquired infections is highly reliant on clean hands. But connecting the dots between our patients and effective hand cleaning is an area we want to understand better. Providence Health Care wants to hear about how you and your family were able to clean your hands during a hospital stay or in a residential care facility and how to improve this experience.

Open to: Patient partners across the province

Lead Organization or Department

Providence Health Care (PHC), Risk Management and Infection Prevention and Control


PHC is seeking feedback from patients, residents and family members about the ease to effectively clean hands during a stay in hospital and/or residential care. They want to understand barriers and identify suggestions for improvement through understanding your experience of hand hygiene.

Level of Engagement

This opportunity is at the level of consult on the spectrum of engagement. The promise to you is that the health care partner will listen to and acknowledge your ideas and concerns, and provide feedback on how your input affected the decision.


  • Patients, residents or family members who experienced a length of stay long enough to recognize the importance of hand cleaning and to share barriers experienced and recommendations to remove these barriers. *Experience can be from any facility; does not need to be exclusive to a PHC site/facility
  • Preference will be given to the following patient/resident/family member experiences:
- those who received teaching from staff on correct procedure for hand cleaning, based on the type of precautions they were on and if the facilities were available to them to perform the hand washing, - those who had an experience when hand cleaning was needed but not provided - those who experienced a situation where they asked, or wanted to ask, health care workers if they cleaned their hands.
  • High level of comfort with sharing your story.
  • Patients should have previously attended a PVN orientation session and signed the Volunteer Agreement. If you have not attended an orientation but are interested, please contact Karen Estrin directly to see if accommodations may be possible.


  • Vacancies: 10+
  • Anticipating 2-3 initial meetings/teleconferences (2 hours each), and then 1-2 follow-up meetings (1 hour each) to verify information and recommendations. Time will be based on availability of patient partners.
  • If in-person meetings are held, they will be at St. Paul’s Hospital in downtown Vancouver, in a room with teleconferencing capability. There will also be an option to participate by answering online surveys with the questions used in the focus groups.


Preapproved expenses related to local travel (i.e. transit, parking up to $18/day, approved mileage) to attend in person meetings will be reimbursed by Providence Health Care. No anticipated expenses for patient partners outside of the Lower Mainland who participate by teleconference or online.


Measuring compliance for hand hygiene has primarily been focused on the health care providers, with regular auditing throughout the year and posting of compliance scores. They recognized that it was equally important for patients to be included and so we initiated a project in acute care where patients having their meals in bed were offered hand wipes when presented with their meal trays. In residential care, residents are offered hand wipes when seated in the dining room. When patients are confined to bed, it is often difficult for them to be able to wash their hands as frequently as they would like. Providence Health Care would like to hear from patients, families and residents about what you found helpful and not so helpful about your ability to practice hand hygiene in their facilities so they can improve this very important area in preventing the transmission of infection.

Engagement Leader Contact Information

Karen Estrin
Engagement Leader, Patient and Public Engagement | Lower Mainland & Sunshine Coast

From Our Community

Lucie Neliba

Patient Partner, Surrey

Lucie Neliba

The Patient Voices Network has connected me to a community with the same drive to bring person- and family-centred care to the forefront. I am grateful for all opportunities I have been a part of thanks to PVN, which positively impacts patients like my sister and their caregivers. No matter how small, all patient engagement will help shape the future of health care and that I can stand behind