Patient and caregiver engagement plays an important role in designing practice improvement and achieving quality outcomes. With a growing recognition that patient interaction informs quality improvement and appropriate use of resources (right care, right time, and in the right place), success is driven by actively partnering with patients as part of the care team.

This section focuses on the roles patients and caregivers play in an effective health partnership; how to improve communications and relationships between patients, caregivers, and care team; how to organize and facilitate an active Patient and Family Advisory Council (PFAC); and how to adapt evidence-based health coaching approaches to promote effective self-management and engage patients and caregivers in decisions around a patient's care.

Many patients do not understand what clinicians have said to them and do not participate in decisions about their care, leaving them ill-prepared to take daily actions that lead to a healthy lifestyle. Helping patients make good choices and maintain healthy behaviors requires a collaborative relationship between the care team, the individual, and their families.


A quick-view table of self-management support activities before the visit, during the visit, and after the visit.

Tip Sheet

A successful Patient and Family Advisory Council requires active and engaged members and recruiting can be challenging. Review and edit this sample script to personalize it for the needs of your organization. 


A Patient and Family Advisory Council (PFAC) serves as resource to a practice/organization’s administration and staff  providing a vehicle for communication and to understand and address miscommunications. PFAC allows the practices to get perspective from the patients and families to whom they are providing care that allows the practice to better understand patients’ needs.

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