YourVoice: BC leads Canada in patient-informed drug review

Limited time only offer! Provide feedback to British Columbia health authorities on drugs under review [definition – PDF]. Specifically:

Through this website, patients, caregivers, and patient advocacy groups can add their voice to the BC PharmaCare drug review process. It is part of our commitment to give British Columbians a chance to share their perspectives on drug decisions that affect them.

The collection of information and personal input is a vital portion of the review process. The website gives eligible patients, caregivers and patient advocacy groups the opportunity to provide their input into the PharmaCare review of several selected drugs.

This is a great way to get patients involved in their care plan, and it is a great sign that pharmaceutical policy makers are taking note of the patient experience. This is obviously not yet a commonplace occurrence; indeed in the Press release, the BC Ministry of Health Services acknowledges that they are the only jurisdiction in Canada that is taking patient and care provider feedback directly.

In a related effort of transparency, I got word via the twitter feed for #amia2010, the conference chatter for the American Medical Informatics Association Symposium, that someone from OpenNotes was presenting. That project, you remember, is the pilot study that got 100 primary care physicians to agree to create and share their notes with their patients in a secure online environment. What a venture!

It is of course a shame that projects like these that promote feedback from and collaboration with the people whom medical services affect the most (ie the PATIENTS) seem so strange and require so much explaining and convincing. But as slow as ardent patient advocates might feel things are going, it doesn’t mean we can’t encourage those who are on the right path. So today I’m proud to live in BC, and work alongside the great team at the BC Ministry. Keep up the engagement!

Source: Press release via @alissasadler

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