Do you want to make a difference in hospital care? Consider becoming a member of our growing Patient and Family Advisory Council

NHH PFAC volunteers

Have you or your loved ones received care from Northumberland Hills Hospital (NHH) in the past three years? Do you have an interest in bringing your lived experience of care to future hospital decision-making in a manner that reflects NHH's core values of integrity, quality, respect, compassion and teamwork? The Patient and Family Advisory Council (PFAC) has a number of volunteer opportunities you may want to consider!

Established at NHH in December 2016, this dynamic Council is now in its ninth year. Through the PFAC, patient and caregiver partners are actively engaged in all core patient care areas of the hospital, working as partners with NHH staff, managers, physicians, midwives and community partners on a wide variety of local and regional hospital activities, special projects and program-focused quality and practice committees with one aim: to make the hospital experience as good as it can be.

“We have an extremely committed PFAC team here at NHH, and—like the hospital itself—our PFAC is growing,” said Jennifer Gillard, Vice President, Patient Experience, Public Affairs and Strategic Partnerships. “NHH is expanding the number of PFAC partners to increase the diversity of voices enhancing the delivery (and experience) of care and caregiving, and the areas of the hospital in which patient and caregiver partners are engaged. We’ve been very intentional about our growth, moving in stages, and sustaining our founding practice of matching each PFAC partner with a ‘buddy’ from our care team. This summer, we are very excited to expand PFAC into areas that have not yet had patient/caregiver representation, including Laboratory Services and Pharmacy, as well as Food Services.”

In total, NHH has opportunities for PFAC partners in the following areas of the hospital:

Time commitment

The full Council meets as a group for bi-monthly meetings, lasting two hours, six times per year. In addition to attending bi-monthly meetings, PFAC partners also participate—based on their experience, interest and schedules—on the specific committee and/or project to which they are assigned, requiring additional background reading and meetings ranging between 6-9 times a year. Meeting times vary according to area of service. Most are held in the daytime or early evening and are currently occurring in a mix of in-person and virtual settings. In-person attendance is encouraged where possible.

How to express interest?

Residents of west Northumberland with an interest in volunteering on NHH’s PFAC are invited to review the Terms of Reference and Role Description and complete the Expression of Interest Form. All documents will be found on the Patient and Family Advisory Council page under the Patients tab of the hospital website at These documents are available in alternate formats on request. Successful candidates will be expected to complete the necessary confidentiality, vaccination and police checks prior to commencing volunteer activities. Interest in NHH’s PFAC is invited at any time, for any program area, though the PFAC aims to fill the above priority opportunities by late August 2024.

View/download the news release pdf