Family Advisory Council

Who We Are

The Family Advisory Council (FAC) gives parents and teenage patients a voice in helping to promote the practice of family-centered care at All Children’s Hospital. The Council serves in an advisory role to provide positive and constructive feedback to All Children’s Hospital leaders. Members also help to highlight ways to support sensitivity to the emotional, cultural and spiritual needs of patients and families.

The Council was established in 2008. Members include parents of current and former patients, teen patients (ages 13 to 18) and hospital staff, working together to help All Children’s provide an outstanding patient experience.

What We Do

The FAC works to promote family-centered care and to help hospital personnel understand the emotional, cultural, and spiritual needs of patients and families—and consider these needs as part of a comprehensive approach to care. FAC members volunteer their time and perspective to help enhance the patient experience both in the hospital and at All Children’s outpatient facilities. We share praise and constructive criticism, and we describe challenging moments and things that made a difference in getting through a tough time.

The topics explored by the FAC range from a broad look at processes and policies to things like food, signs, parking and other day-to-day elements of a hospital stay. These topics may include:

  • Feedback on All Children’s services, facilities and initiatives
  • Family support and resources
  • Communication with families

Advancing the philosophy of family-centered care.The FAC has championed several projects. Members worked directly with doctors and residents to launch Family-Centered Rounds on the hospital’s 8th floor Pediatric Medicine Unit. Parents and children took part in training sessions with resident physicians, helping them feel comfortable in more open discussion of the patient’s progress and care plan.

Several members starred in a brief video explaining Family-Centered Rounds to parents and patients. When a patient is admitted to ACH for the first time, the video is required viewing on the GetWellNetwork, an in-room education and entertainment system. A follow-up survey found that 93 percent of families chose to take part in Family-Centered Rounds and 96 percent thought that the video helped with their participation.

More recently, we have provided input on the use of the MyHealth Patient Portal to help families easily access their child’s health information.

When We Meet

We meet 9 Tuesdays each year. From September through June, meetings are held at the hospital on the third Tuesday of each month from 6 to 8 p.m.—with a break in December for the busy holiday season.

There are opportunities to take part in FAC special events at other times.

Parents and teens are welcome to attend a meeting as guests. If you would like to attend a meeting as a guest to discuss a specific topic, please email achFamilyAdvisoryCouncil@jhmi.edu.

Parents and teens are welcome to attend our meeting as a guest.

Past Projects

Past FAC initiatives have included:

  • Helping to create a new inpatient family handbook, including advice and encouragement directly from parents and patients
  • Helping to select sleep chairs and other equipment for patient rooms
  • Sharing their perspective to help the dietary department expand the variety of healthy menu choices
  • Working with dietary staff to ensure that a patient’s food allergies are carefully considered
  • Taking part in Nurses Week panel discussions to share experiences on how their child’s nurses at ACH have had an impact on their lives
  • Helping to educate families about hand hygiene and other patient safety topics
  • Preparing a meal for families staying at Ronald McDonald House on the ACH campus

How to Get Involved

Parents and teen patients (ages 13-18) are encouraged to apply throughout the year to serve as FAC members.  The Council tries to include families of children with a range of medical conditions who have experienced care on one or more inpatient units and/or frequently use outpatient services at All Children’s

Members serve a two-year term, with several new members added to the group each January. If you would like to apply to be a FAC, please fill out the application.