Patient Family & Community Engagement

Every Patient Has a Story

On the Road with Patient Experience Conference 2016 – April 2016

by Natalie McKay

Patient Experience Conference continues to be a reflection of what all our community has accomplished together and a place for both recharging and for learning. PX2016 consisted of three days exemplifying a year of significant work and major accomplishments for the patient experience field and reflecting the purpose and passion that participants contribute in leading the patient experience movement forward.

With almost 1,000 participants from around the globe, PX2016 encompassed an energetic group of caregivers and nurses, physicians and support staff, patients and families, resource providers and many others who are all on their patient experience journey. This was an opportunity for people to share ideas, learn from other experiences, make new friends and build lasting connections. PX2016 is a testament to The Beryl Institute’s foundation of shared core values of how we operate and believe experience improvement success is driven by, including the power of accessibility, agility, innovation, inclusivity and collaboration.

A Place of Accessibility and Agility
PX2016 Opening Session kicked off premiering the conference opening video featuring a patient’s perspective of care and the providers across the continuum of care throughout the journey. The video was a reminder of how every patient has a story, every experience touches countless lives and every person is the patient experience. We were excited to have the featured patient in the video, Les Starck, join us and share his patient experience story.

President of The Beryl Institute, Jason A. Wolf, PhD, discussed the overall patient experience story and the experience era that lies ahead of us. During his opening session, he requested input on how you would define the value of patient experience as the Institute continues to develop and support the case for a focus on patient experience. In a brief 4-question survey, we encourage you to provide your perspective here.

New this year, the Institute streamed the opening session through Facebook Live. Currently reaching over 3,500 people with more than 1,000 views, this was an opportunity for the community to engage with PX2016 beyond the conference floors and reinforced the Institute’s value to accessibility in providing an invitation to engage and the value of agility realigning resources to lead in new directions. If you missed the live broadcast of the opening session, you can view it on Facebook here.

Social media gave the Institute and PX2016 participants a platform to share ideas, experiences and strategies learned, expanding the experience dialogue and engaging with people from all over the world. We encouraged conference participants to share and reflect on their learning experiences with others via social media by tagging photos, tweets and posts with the #PX2016 hashtag. Tweets tagged with #PX2016 were live streaming on monitors throughout the conference foyers, providing an interactive way for people to engage. By the numbers during conference week, the #PX2016 hashtag had 7,292,662 impressions, 3,034 tweets and an average of 18 tweets per hour.

A Place for Innovation
With over 50 breakout sessions, three community gatherings, three pre-conference workshops, seven poster sessions and four keynote presentations, PX2016 speakers comprised the voices of patients, families, caregivers, hospital executives, physicians, consultants, nurses and industry leaders sharing proven practices, innovations and strategies.

Patient Experience Conference began with three pre-conference workshops. Healthcare leaders from Enviah and Healing HealthCare Systems discussed elements of supportive design, University of California in San Francisco and American Academy on Communication in Healthcare shared how to build skills related to forming strong coaching relationships and Language of Caring conducted a hands-on activity building strategy maps based on effective improvement planning.

Our keynote speakers brought powerful insights about their personal journey as they continued to address proven practices and the impact on patient experience. Ronan Tynan delivered an inspirational and touching message about his experience as a recording artist, physician and champion disabled athlete. He awed the audience and brought them to their feet with a musical performance at the start and end of his presentation. Cynthia Mercer, Senior Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer at Mercy Health, started day two of PX2016 discussing the importance of culture in an organization and focused on how people want a purpose, not a place.

Montel Williams, Talk Show Host and MS Awareness Champion, captivated the audience with an inspiring message of overcoming the odds through his personal stories and encouraged us to be healthy caregivers. In order to provide excellent patient experience, we must also learn to take care of ourselves. In the closing keynote presentation, Kelly Corrigan, Author and Philanthropist, shared her story as a breast cancer survivor and focused on the power of humanity first and telling more stories. Patient stories are shared stories and she encouraged us to tell both patient and staff stories together more often.

In addition to this year’s program, PX Poster Sessions gave authors the opportunity to share graphic presentations with participants highlighting their proven practices, successful ideas and innovative programs. Research ranged from a variety of patient experience topics such as hourly rounding, staff engagement, culture and leadership and spiritual care.

A Place of Inclusivity
Prior to the general opening session of the conference, almost 400 participants joined the First Time Attendee Welcome to learn from past conference participants on how to make the most out of their conference experience. They spent time sharing expectations and hopes for the week with their tables and then had a chance to ask questions to a panel of seasoned conference participants in a Q&A format. The panelists shared their thoughts on maximizing networking opportunities within the program, finding ways to further engage with the Institute beyond conference and tips and suggestions on how to take back what they’ve learned to implement in the workplace.

First time attendees also had the opportunity to be paired up with seasoned conference attendees who acted as ambassadors assisting with conference-related questions and providing tips for making the most of the conference experience. The goal of the Ambassador Program was to help new attendees network with fellow professionals and provide a better overall conference experience for all. Over 150 attendees and 30 ambassadors connected at a luncheon where they could network and share experiences before the conference began.

Conference participants had the opportunity to network with colleagues and learn more about services and resources available to help expand their patient experience efforts. Participants were encouraged to use their PX Passport to explore the exhibitor areas during breaks, before and after each day’s program and during the exhibitor reception. Those who turned in completed PX Passports were entered into a chance to win a meet and greet with one of our keynote speakers, Montel Williams.

PX2016 day two ended with a fun evening of networking, dining and live music at The Margot and Bill Winspear Opera House. The networking reception is part of our commitment to providing participants the opportunity to convene and engage with one another. Tables filled the main area and outside patio as participants had choices from different buffet stations. This was a great opportunity for us to wind down, network and discuss the first day of the conference. Participants also went on guided opera house tours to walk around and explore and enjoyed live music from the Dallas String Quartet on electric string instruments.

A Place for Collaboration
The PX Collaborative comprised of several of the Institute’s sister organizations who share our commitment to patient experience improvement including: American Academy on Communication in Healthcare (AACH), Caregiver Action Network (CAN), Patient Advocacy Community (PAC) of The Beryl Institute, Patient Experience Institute (PXI) and The Center for Health Design. This was an opportunity for likeminded organizations to share their resources on how to help participants excel in their patient experience journey. We are never in this work alone and are thankful for organizations that come together to expand the patient experience conversation.

More than 200 conference participants joined the community gatherings as an opportunity to network and engage in facilitated discussion with peers. An opportunity to foster collaboration and learning for individuals at all stages of progress, the community gatherings connected several of our special interest communities including Patient Advocacy, Pediatric and Physician. Special Interest Communities of The Beryl Institute serve as a virtual connection among healthcare leaders committed to improving the patient experience in an identified area of interest. They offer a venue for sharing ideas, practices, challenges and opportunities throughout the year with Patient Experience Conference providing a place for an in-person gathering.

Every Patient Has a Story, Every Experience Touches Countless Lives and Every Person is the Patient Experience
As the patient experience movement expands globally, conference participants are a robust part of the 45,000 voices now engaged in the conversation as members and guests of the Institute community. There is no longer the question of “Does patient experience matter?” We as caregivers, patients, family members and resource providers across the continuum of care know that it matters. The question now is “How does patient experience matter to you?” Whether that is through our understanding as caregivers, experiences as patients or family members or participation as resource providers, we each play an important part in improving the patient experience by telling our stories of why experience excellence matters to us. Every patient has a story and it is up to us to ensure it is told.

Jason mentioned in his opening session that we are now in the “experience era” – we must define our target, we must sharpen our focus and we must think and act systemically. The experience era comprises of various components focusing on acknowledging experience is global, remembering all voices matter in care and sharing often with one another. Although another conference year has come to a close, the patient experience movement goes beyond our time here in Dallas. May we hold onto the “nuggets of awesomeness” (a phrase commonly referenced among participants) learned throughout breakout sessions and keynotes and dive into the experience era alongside each other, where we share wildly and steal willingly. Thank you for letting us be a part of your patient experience journey!

Hear more from the perspectives of some of our PX2016 participants:
“This was my first time at the Patient Experience conference. As I walked into the hotel on Tuesday, April 12, I was overwhelmed at the amount of people there to attend the conference. But when I arrived on Wednesday to the start of the conference, everyone was very inviting, welcoming, kind and eager to meet each other as I was. PX2016 exceeded my expectations in every way. I networked with great people and hopefully built some lasting relationships and resources. I cannot wait for next year’s conference and I am SO excited that it is in Denver.”
-Heather Jensen, Regional West Medical Center

“For both the new PX leader and the seasoned professional, this conference is a valuable source of inspired learning.”
-Linda Basara, St. Luke’s Hospital

“Very educational and informative! I learned a lot during these sessions – great, passionate presenters.”
-Matt White, Agnesian HealthCare

“Outstanding conference – the only one I attend because of value.”
-Melanie Waller, HCA

“Truly an AMAZING experience and so incredibly efficient/valuable! Thank you all SO much for the wonderful experience. We are already counting down the days until next year!”
-Amanda Walker, Heritage Biologics

“We had six nurses from our facility attend, in addition to myself! That was a first. They are all very excited about the information they are bringing back. Thanks for inspiring them in the PX effort!!!”
-Brenda Keeton, Baylor Heart and Vascular Hospital

“The conference was wonderful. I thank you for the experience. I was so moved by the keynotes and was able to learn from the breakout sessions. I have taken back a lot of vendor information and have been able to connect with other PXers.”
-Holli Smith, J.C. Blair Memorial Hospital


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