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Because your voice matters.

Individual Conversations: Insights in Patient Engagement

Posted • Last updated


Open to Interior Region, Volunteers across the Interior region

Last updated

Interior Health is developing a Patient Engagement in Research plan, and it’s seeking patients to provide suggestions, needs, ideas, or critiques.

Open to: Volunteers across the Interior region

Lead Organization or Department

BC SUPPORT Unit Interior Centre Key Contact: Karin Maiwald, Interior Health


To ensure patients’ suggestions, needs, ideas or critiques are reflected in the development of the Patient Engagement in Research plan in Interior Health.

Level of Engagement

This opportunity is at the level of involve on the spectrum of engagement ( The promise to you is that the health care partner will work with you to ensure that your ideas and concerns are reflected in recommendations and provide feedback on how your input affected the decision.


  • We encourage patients from diverse ages, gender, region/community, health conditions, experiences with research and research-related activities, skills and expertise to consider participation.
  • Preference for volunteers who worked with an academic, have been involved in strategic planning work, health care improvement work within Interior Health.
  • Open to volunteers across the entire spectrum of health-problems and/or disabilities across the whole Interior region.
  • Patients should have previously attended a PVN orientation session. If you have not attended an orientation but are interested, please contact the supporting Engagement Leader directly to see if accommodations may be possible.


  • We are looking for approximately 10-12 PVN Volunteers. Additional volunteers may be included if there is much interest and time permits.
  • This is a one-time event – the telephone/teleconference individual conversations are scheduled to take place in October and November 2016. Various meeting dates will be offered to the participants, allowing flexibility and preference.
  • Conversations will be approximately 45 minutes long but can be shorter/longer (maximum one hour). Note: conversations will be recorded, if the participant agrees, to ensure we capture what is being said and can go back to key pieces in conversations. The participant can stop the conversation at any time.


We do not expect any expenses to occur as a result of these conversations.


  • Patient-oriented research is defined as research that engages patients as partners and focuses on patient-identified priorities with the goals of improving patient experiences, health outcomes and the health system.
  • The BC SUPPORT Unit is a multi-partner organization created to support, streamline and increase patient-oriented research throughout BC. The Unit is one of several SUPPORT Units established across the country as part of Canada’s Strategy for Patient-Oriented Research (SPOR) led by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR). Regional centres will be the first point of contact for stakeholders located outside of the Vancouver region.
  • According to CIHR, “Canada’s Strategy for Patient-Oriented Research (SPOR) is about ensuring that the right patient receives the right intervention at the right time” (CIHR 2015). The objective of SPOR is to foster person-centred evidence-informed health care by bringing innovative diagnostic and therapeutic approaches to the point of care, so as to ensure greater quality, accountability, and accessibility of care.
  • BC SUPPORT Unit regional centres, corresponding with regional health authorities and their affiliated universities, will provide a key integration function, ensuring that patient-oriented research is conducted and research evidence is used to improve patient experience and outcomes – and that patients are engaged in these efforts.
  • The BC SUPPORT Unit Interior Centre is one of the regional centres.
More about the opportunity (Who else will be involved) First, in the Interior Centre, we are asking patients about their perceptions and experiences when engaging and participating in research (i.e., worked with an academic, have been involved in strategic planning work, healthcare improvement work) in the Interior region. Secondly, we like to hear their needs, ideas, and suggestions to design patient engagement in research in this large organization. And, we will be asking researchers, decision-makers, clinicians and providers similar questions. What are benefits and risks, if any The Interior Centre estimates no risks to participants when engaging in preliminary conversations with trained professionals from the Interior Health Authority and from the University of British Columbia- Okanagan. And, the participant can stop the conversation at any time. We would like to suggest that participating could benefit the people in the Interior region and in BC in terms of contributing and having a voice in designing a NEW research strategy in the Interior region.

Health Care Partner Contact Information

Selena Davis
Engagement Leader, Patient and Public Engagement | Kootenays & Boundary


From Our Community

Karla Warkotsch

Patient Experience Consultant – Interior Health

Karla Warkotsch

The question I like to ask health care employees is ‘Who is this for?’ and ‘Do we have the right people at the table?’ As a health care employee, I see how easy it is to fall into doing for, rather than doing with patients. The voices of the patient, family and caregiver are essential to ensure the patient is central to the direction and focus of the work being done.