Part II of our four-part Patient’s View Miniseries focuses on the BC Cancer Agency!

The BC Cancer Agency’s Vancouver Centre began engaging Langara nursing students in January 2017 to partner with patients and families in identifying quality and safety issues using BCPSLS Patient’s View.

Tracy Lust, Quality, Safety & Accreditation Leader, BC Cancer Agency, believes the collaboration with Langara College of Nursing has been instrumental in the success of the program.

“We had the plan to implement Patient’s View, but the students have really brought it to life. We are so grateful to Langara and the students for embracing the project and helping us continue it with consistency. As an organization, we are continually striving to incorporate the patient perspective in decision-making and Patient’s View contributes to this process.”

Langara College of Nursing student Agnes Yuen | Photo credit: Golnaz Sadjadi


Agnes Yuen and Andrew Yan were the second group of students from Langara to participate in Patient’s View at the BC Cancer Agency. Both are passionate about the patient experience and would like patients and families to know that they offer an important, valuable perspective.

Agnes and Andrew find that when they have conversations with families, the majority have only positive things to say and are grateful for the care they are receiving. This opens up an educational opportunity to share information about patient safety safeguards such as hand hygiene and staff identification.

“Most of the time patients say their care has been so amazing,” says Andrew. “Then we get into the specifics listed on the tool, such as complications of care, problems with medications, and miscommunication. Sometimes patients say, ‘Oh, I haven’t really noticed that, but maybe I will start noticing that from now on.’ Developing that connection with patients and being supportive was a big part of this experience. Some patients and families are going through a really tough time and they just need to talk sometimes.”

“I spoke with a patient who had some concerns about the care his dad was receiving,” adds Agnes. “I asked if he had raised the concern with staff and he said, ‘Oh, I didn’t really think of talking to the staff.’ So this was a learning opportunity to empower patients.”


Langara College of Nursing student Andrew Yan | Photo credit: Golnaz Sadjadi


In addition to their contributions to the project, Tracy observed first-hand the students’ progress and professional growth.

“We are so grateful to the students for all their work with this project,” says Tracy. “We want to make sure that the students meet their learning expectations, such as patient interaction and developing interview skills, in addition to being involved with an improvement project from the ground up. It was so wonderful to see the students’ skills and confidence expand as the project went on.”

In order to reach patients in the ambulatory care setting, the BC Cancer Agency has taken a different approach from the acute care model that was originally developed at BC Children’s Hospital. Rather than interviewing patients and families prior to discharge, they are approached while spending time in the waiting room before appointments. Given the setting, patients are encouraged not to disclose any personal information or diagnoses, and the wording of the questionnaire was adapted to the outpatient setting.

Patient’s View also provided Andrew and Agnes with an opportunity to hone their presentation skills. The two students were selected as recipients of an Innovation Award from the Association of Registered Nurses of British Columbia (ARNBC) and invited to present at ARNBC’s Annual General Meeting in June.


Andrew Yan and Agnes Yuen presenting at ARNBC’s 2017 AGM | Photo credit: ARNBC

“It was a good experience that not a lot of people get to do,” says Agnes. “It was actually pretty scary knowing that there were lots of RNs and Quality professionals there watching our Power Point! But I was glad to be able to do it because I was able to let other leaders know about Patient’s View and how important it is to incorporate patients and let them be part of the health care system. Because we see things differently than patients. We learn things we didn’t know before.”

For more information, please contact Tracy Lust.


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