Background: The initiative of the Medical College of Georgia (MCG) Hospital and Clinics in patient/family-centeredness began with the inpatient pediatric units. As plans were being made for a separate, dedicated children's medical center, patient/family-centered care was chosen as the new model of care delivery. MCG began to adopt the model for the adult hospital and the other clinical sites in 1996.
Use of patient feedback: Multiple strategies were developed, including the formation of advisory councils, to elicit information from and build relationships with patients and families. Since 1996 patients and family members have been involved in facility design planning for various adult services. A broad-based community advisory committee helped in the planning for a freestanding community-based Center for Senior Health. Patients and family members were also involved in the planning of the redesign process for the preoperative evaluation and ambulatory surgery waiting areas. More recently, focus groups of patients and families were convened to address the design and facility planning for two additional areas of the hospital: the family waiting areas for the specialized care centers (four of the critical care areas) and the outpatient cardiology services area. Patient and family input has also been used to evaluate and change care practices, for example, in the unit and bed assignments made for living-related kidney transplant donors and recipients.
Future directions: MCG Hospital and Clinics continue to use the patient satisfaction survey process and multiple advisory groups. The next phase of implementation will focus on further education and training of staff.