Augusta University: Patient-and Family-Centered Care - Patient and Family Advisor Handbook

Experience in Action

Contact Information

If you have additional questions or concerns, please call a member of our staff. We welcome your inquiries and look forward to working with you to keep Augusta University Medical Center in the vanguard of PFCC.

Erica Steed
Manager of Patient and Family Engagement
706-721-PFCC (7322)

To learn more about PFCC, please visit

What is Patient- and Family-Centered Care (PFCC)?

Patient- and Family-Centered Care (PFCC) is an approach to health care delivery that emphasizes partnerships and collaboration among health care providers, patients and their families. It is based on the following principles:

  • People are treated with respect and dignity.
  • Health care providers communicate and share complete and unbiased information with patient's and families in ways that are affirming and useful.
  • Individuals and families build on their strengths through participation in experiences that enhance control and independence.
  • Collaboration amount patients, families and providers occurs in policy and program development and professional education, as well as in the delivery of care.

Patient and Family Advisors: The Voice of Our Patients

At Augusta University Medical Center, we realize that patient and family involvement helps us provide better care … often with better outcomes.

This became clear in 1992, when we assembled a group of parents to help with the design of our Children's Hospital of Georgia. Since then, we have become a leader in a concept known as Patient- and Family-Centered Care (PFCC), a systematic process through which we now include patients and family advisors in virtually every decision we make.

Our advisors are patients or family members of patients – people like you who have first-hand experience with Augusta University Medical Center or Children's Hospital of Georgia and are willing to share their stories and suggestions.

Advisors staff more than 30 Patient and Family Advisory Councils in various departments or clinics. The councils allow us to elicit feedback on specific areas of our organization. We use this information to improve facility design or décor, make process improvements, strengthen communications and improve other areas. As a result, we are continuously refining the patient experience.

We could not do that without the help of advisors like you. Thank you for using your personal experiences to make Augusta University Medical Center and Children's Hospital of Georgia more accommodating, patient-centered facilities.

Noon-1 p.m.

Shock Trauma
3rd Wednesday of the month
11 a.m.

Sports Medicine
1st Friday of the month

Surgical Sub-specialties and Specialties
1st Tuesday of the month
5-6 p.m.

Transplant Advisory
Last Tuesday of the month
5 p.m.

Women's Health

Advisory Council Meeting Schedules

To foster continuous improvement, our Advisory Councils meet on a regularly scheduled basis. You will receive an e-mail before each meeting, reminding you of the meeting date, time and location.

Behavioral Health
1st Tuesday of the month
5:30-7 p.m.

Cancer Center
4th Monday of the month

Cardiovascular Center
Quarterly on the third Thursday
5:30-7 p.m.

Family Advisory Council
1st Tuesday of the month
7-8 p.m.

Family Medicine
1st Wednesday of the month
Noon-1:30 p.m.

Georgia Regents Medical Center Health Partners
4th Tuesday of the month
5-7 p.m.

Georgia Radiation Therapy Center
4th Tuesday on the month

Infectious Disease/Medicine IV
2nd Tuesday of the month
5:30 p.m.

Kids ART
11 a.m.-Noon

Medical Office Partners
2nd Thursday of the month
5 p.m.

Medicine Practice Site
4th Tuesday of the month
5:30 p.m.

MS Clinic
Scheduled quarterly at each meeting

2nd Friday of the month
5 p.m.

3rd Tuesday of the month
12:30 p.m.

Pain Clinic
2nd Wednesday every other month
Noon–1 p.m.

PFCC Meeting
4th Tuesday of each month
3:30-5 p.m.

1st Thursday of the month
5 p.m.

Patient and family advisors are asked to attend an initial orientation session that lasts approximately one hour. We also offer the following optional courses for advisors who wish to learn more:

  • Developing Patient Stories
  • How to Become a True Partner with Augusta University Medical Center
  • The Effective Committee Member
  • The Effective Departmental/Clinical Services Advisor
  • Working with Architects: Construction and Renovation Projects
  • The Effective Health Partner
  • How to Represent Augusta University Medical Center
  • The Art of Interviewing Perspective Employees
  • Working with Other Advisors and Staff Members
  • Overview and Review

These optional courses lasts two hours or less. For more information or to register for a course, call 706-721-PFCC (7322) or email

Advisory Councils: Focusing on One Specific Area

Augusta University Medical Center sponsors more than 30 Patient and Family Advisory Councils. These councils meet monthly or quarterly and are led by facilitators who ask for advisors' insights on specific issues. If you received care from multiple departments, you may wish to serve on more than one council.

Committees or Interest Groups: Tackling Special Projects

We also form special committees or interest groups to serve as advisors on individual projects, such as renovating a particular facility or improving the quality in a certain area. These committees usually require a short-term commitment, but tend to meet more frequently than Advisory Councils during the duration of the project.

The Family Faculty: Expanding the Concept of PFCC

The Family Faculty was designed to strengthen the overall partnerships between health care professionals, patients and families. Its members help health care providers and students at Augusta University learn more about PFCC and the needs of patients with chronic illnesses, disabilities and other health challenges.

After undergoing a training process, Family Faculty members volunteer in a variety of settings, selecting the environments in which they feel most comfortable. These include:

  • Speaking to an individual student or health care professional
  • Taking part in panel discussions
  • Speaking at New Employee Orientation sessions
  • Speaking at learning labs designed to foster PFCC among our employees
  • Visiting and working with other health care organizations that are interested in learning more about PFCC

If you are interested in serving as a Family Faculty member, please call 706-721-PFCC (7322).

PFCC in Action: Georgia Cancer Center at Augusta University

Our patient and family advisors helped us create an adult outpatient cancer center with a warm, healing atmosphere. With their input, we included special touches such as natural light, outdoor views, artwork, native plants and calming colors to provide a soothing environment for cancer patients. Our advisors also helped us make process improvements that made it easier for patients to quickly access all the resources they need.

Return to the Main Page

This website is certified by Health On the Net Foundation. Click to verify. This site complies with the HONcode standard for trustworthy health information: verify here.