Committees give Islanders a bolder voice in health-system planning

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Islanders from across the province will give patients and the public a stronger voice in the health system.

Two Community Health Engagement Committees – one from the west and one from the east – will collect input from Islanders on the direction of the health care system. They will provide feedback to the minister of Health and Wellness and Health PEI on provincial strategies for health-care delivery and identify issues from a regional perspective.

“Creating these committees fulfils part of our 2015 Throne Speech commitment to enhance patient and public participation in health planning and decision making,” Health and Wellness Minister Robert Henderson said. “These committee members will share their thoughts and provide suggestions to help us deliver the most efficient and effective health for all Islanders.”

Applications for these committees were accepted through Engage PEI, where Islanders can apply to volunteer with nearly 70 provincial government agencies, boards or commissions. The first committee meetings will be in late October.

"I deeply believe that our current health system is one of the best in the world – but as a lay person and occasional user of the system, I also see room for improvement,” said Nancy Cole, a member of the western region Community Health Engagement Committee. “My aim, as a member of the Community Health Engagement Committee, is to listen, speak plainly and help in any way possible to make health care a right we can all be proud of."


The following Islanders have been appointed to the Community Health Engagement Committee Eastern Region:
•    Judy Herlihy
•    Merrill Scott
•    Ken DesRoches
•    Krystine Richards
•    Stephanie Francis
•    Tracy Gallant
•    Cliff Campbell
•    Louis Callaghan – representing the Kings County Memorial Hospital Foundation
•    Jackie Goodwin – representing the Queen Elizabeth Hospital Foundation, and
•    David Nicholson – representing the Eastern Kings Health Foundation

The following Islanders have been appointed to the Community Health Engagement Committee Western Region:
•    Mary Leblanc
•    Donald Strongman
•    Whitney Harris
•    Tracy MacLenna
•    Noella Richard
•    Colleen Parker
•    Donna Gallant
•    Don MacEachern
•    Nancy Cole
•    Krystyna Pottier – representing Western Hospital Foundation
•    Eileen Brown – representing O’Leary Community Health Foundation, and
•    Les Chipperfield – representing Prince County Hospital Foundation

The Community Health Engagement Committees shall provide a mechanism for ongoing community input to assist the Department of Health and Wellness and Health PEI in its processes related to health services for Islanders.

There are two Community Health Engagement Committees, a Western Region and an Eastern Region. The Federal electoral districts form the geographic boundaries for each committee.

The duties of the Community Engagement Committees are as follows:
•    to gather and consider information from the public respecting health needs and services in the region of the committee;
•    to identify health-related issues in the region of the committee;
•    to provide feedback related to health policy to the Minister and feedback related to the delivery of health services to Health PEI respecting:

•    the health needs, services and issues in the region of the committee,
•    the strategic plan prepared and submitted by Health PEI,
•    the strategic plan of the Department, and
•    provincial strategies for health care delivery

Each committee is comprised of up to 12 members meeting the following criteria
•    up to nine public members who reside in the applicable electoral districts, and
•    a nominated member from each Hospital Foundation for each of the three hospitals located in the committee region.

Members shall serve on a committee without remuneration but may be reimbursed for mileage expenses.

Islanders interested in sitting on one of the committees had the opportunity to apply through Engagement PEI over the summer months. The term length of the initial members varies; this is to ensure that all of the members do not expire at the same time.

Media contact
Autumn Tremere 
Department of Health and Wellness

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