Issue No. 35 Community Voices in Health Professional Education at UBC

January 2017

Issue 35

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Voices Newsletter

Reaching over 1500 people in the community and the university, this newsletter promotes patient and community involvement in health professional education at UBC.

Study Published on How Health Mentors Teach

Research exploring the teaching goals and methods of Health Mentors (expert patients) has been published in Medical Teacher.

Phoebe Cheng, a 3rd year medical student and past Health Mentors participant, did the study for a student research project funded by CIHR (Health Professional Student Research Award).

The study found that mentors use 4 main teaching methods - telling their story, stimulating reflection, sharing perspectives and problem solving - to promote patient-centeredness and interprofessional team work.

Mentors also reported drawing on a variety of career or volunteer experiences as well as their extensive interactions with health care professionals to prepare for their teaching role. The findings challenge the common belief that patients need faculty-led training to be educators.

Cheng P. & Towle  A. (2016). How patient educators help students to learn: An exploratory study, Medical Teacher, DOI:

If you have trouble accessing the paper, email

New Patient & Community Voices Workshop Led by Caregivers!

On January 25th, a new workshop was added to the Patient & Community Voices series.

The Caregiver’s Journey: Heartbreak and Love was developed after a report from Doctors of BC called for better recognition of family caregivers as partners in care.

"That's when we put a call out to caregivers in the Health Mentors Program who agreed to put on a workshop for health care students from their perspectives as caregivers." says, Cathy Kline, Health Mentors program coordinator.

Nearly 400 students tried to register for the workshop which features a panel of caregivers who share their personal experiences caring for a loved one with a chronic health condition. The group will hold a second workshop in February.

Contact for more information.

Health Mentors Group Wraps up on a High

Lucy Goncalves (Mentor) shows Greg, Chelsey, and Rebecca (OT students) how adapted climbing works.

Inspired by photos of their mentor rock climbing, these students wanted to see how adapted climbing works first hand. For their final meeting the group chose to take their learning to new heights with a trip to the climbing gym.

"Ending the Health Mentors program this way was a perfect way to link back to all of our discussions in the past year. I learned that each person is unique in how they will approach the activity and we too, as professionals, have to be adaptable to each client's need. I was able to try the sling and attempt the climb after Lucy was finished and I was amazed by what a little change in height can do to change perspective of the world around you, something, perhaps that a lot of healthcare professionals don't do enough!" says, Occupational Therapy student Chelsey Gowan.

The Health Mentors Program is a 16-month course that helps health care students learn about living with chronic disease or disability from the perspective of patients and families.

Former Umpire Goes to Bat for CP

Dan Chalcraft got involved with the Cerebral Palsy Association of BC (CPABC) to learn more about his condition and to give back to the CP community.

On December 7th, Dan gave back by teaching health care professionals at GF Strong Rehabilitation Centre about his experience living with CP and the various programs offered by CPABC to help people with CP and other disabilities.

"Education is so important when it comes to seeing people in a different light, especially with disabilities. I wanted to let health professionals know that in addition to doing the best that you can, there are organizations like ours that are out there to help." says Dan.

Read Dan's story...

Computer Science Student Hired to Build PIE Website

Adnan Reza, a second-year graduate student (MSc) in Computer Science at UBC, has been hired with a generous donation from Christine Farrell to build a website for Patients in Education (PIE). 

He will be working closely with PIE members in the coming months to create a website to help the group be more accessible to educators who want to involve patients in teaching.

Adnan's research interests lie at the interface between Computer Science and Economics: Algorithmic Game Theory and Mechanism Design. When he is not studying or teaching, Adnan enjoys playing cricket and table tennis.
Brought to you by:

Patient & Community Partnership for Education
Office of UBC Health
Woodward Instructional Resources Center
400 - 2194 Health Sciences Mall,
Vancouver, BC, V6T 1Z3, Canada
Tel: (604) 822-8002

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UBC Patient & Community Partnership for Education| UBC Health · 400-2194 Health Sciences Mall · University of British Columbia · Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z3 · Canada

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