American Family Children's Hospital

Ways to Get Involved

Approximately 180 Patient and Family Advisors are actively engaged in improvement efforts, partnering with staff throughout UW Health. Their contributions span numerous Patient and Family Advisory Councils and dozens of work groups and committees.



Patient and Family Advisory Councils (PFACs)


Advisory Councils meet regularly to provide feedback on an array of topics affecting the patient and family experience. Most meetings are held in the early evening or on Saturday mornings. Frequency of the meetings varies, depending on the scope and bylaws for each council, but most meet monthly or quarterly.


Some activities may involve a greater time commitment. Because space is limited on each council, it is possible that not all applicants will be able to serve. Applications are kept on file for future openings.


Current councils focus on:

  • American Family Children's Hospital PFAC: Focusing on the care of pediatric patients at American Family Children's Hospital.

  • Breast Center PFAC: Focusing on the needs of patients at the UW Health Breast Center

  • Heart, Vascular and Thoracic Care PFAC: Focusing on the needs of patients receiving Heart, Vascular and Thoracic care services.

  • MyChart PFAC: Focusing on developing and improving the MyChart online tool for patients and their families.

  • Northeast Family Medical Center PFAC: Focusing on the needs of patients at the Northeast Family Medical Center

  • Oncology Services PFAC: Focusing on supporting the needs of all patients of the UW Carbone Cancer Center and their caregivers.

  • Ophthalmology PFAC: Focusing on the needs of UW Health Eye Care Services (Ophthalmology) patients.

  • Pediatric Primary Care PFAC: Focusing on the unique needs of children and their parents within the primary care setting.

  • Primary Care PFAC: Focusing on redesigning the Primary Care visit, as well as health care provided between visits with your primary care team.

  • Psychiatry PFAC: Focusing on the needs of UW Health Psychiatry patients.

  • Transplant PFAC: Focusing on the needs of Transplant patients and their families throughout the region (meets quarterly).

  • UW Health PFAC: Focusing on the overall needs of all UW Health patients

Standing Committees or Quality Councils


These are comprised primarily of physician leaders and staff who are working to set and advance organizational priorities. PFAs are invited to represent the patient and family perspective and partner with staff, usually meeting once per month for 60 to 90 minutes. We aim to have at least two PFAs serve on each committee and ask for a one- to two-year commitment. Examples include:

  • Advanced Care Planning
  • Ethics Committee
  • Nursing Quality Council
  • Patient Education Steering Committee
  • Patient Experience Committee

Short-Term Workgroups


These groups embark on a focused effort for a shorter length of time, usually working to improve a process or way of delivering care. Short-term assignments could also involve serving on a facility team to help design (or redesign) facilities to be more patient- and family-friendly, or on an executive search committee to evaluate candidates for leadership positions. The commitment varies from one week to one year. Examples include:

  • Cardiology Focus Group
  • Falls Prevention
  • Transitions of Care subgroups
  • Union Corners Facility Design Team

Voices of UW Health


This group is comprised of Patient and Family Advisors (PFAs) who have completed the Voices of UW Health training program, which prepares (PFAs) to share their personal stories with a live audience. As a member of Voices, you may be asked to share your story at a staff meeting or retreat, conference/symposium, event or leadership function. If you have an interest in sharing your story to inform, educate and inspire others, we'd like to hear from you!


Application to Join Our Patient and Family Advisor (PFA) Speakers' Bureau