About Us: Partnering With Patients


patient experience

At Park Nicollet, some of our best innovations have been shaped by input from patient and family partnership councils. From the revolutionary patient-focused designs of Frauenshuh Cancer Center to innovative care models at Melrose Center, patients are helping create a brighter future at Park Nicollet.    

There are currently more than 120 patient and family partners serving as advisors on patient advisory councils and in similar roles at Park Nicollet. The 21 councils represent a variety of service areas, including clinics and specialty centers.

What does a patient partner do?

There are a variety of ways you can be involved as a patient partner.

  • Storytelling Hearing about others’ experiences helps us gain new perspectives, improve processes, and collaborate to make the patient experience the best it can be. Patient partners have opportunities to share their stories in large or small groups, over the phone or in writing.
  • Advisory councils  Patient advisory council members meet regularly and collaborate with Park Nicollet team members to improve processes and communication, help with facility planning and improve the patient experience.
  • Quality improvement events Throughout the year patient partners participate in events focused on specific improvement initiatives. Patient partners work alongside cross-organizational teams, typically for a short but concentrated period of time.
  • Team member training During orientations, patient partners can share their stories and facilitate discussions to help employees gain new perspectives and enhance the overall patient experience.
    “As patients, we are able to bring different knowledge and perspective to the table. I'm thrilled the staff at the clinic realizes our input is important."
    – Dennis H., patient partner

Other engagement opportunities include sitting on committees, mentoring new partners and participating in various improvement

initiatives. Patient partners have facilitated support groups, helped improve directional signage, provided input on facility designs and helped enhance patient education materials. Patient partners also occasionally help us gather feedback from patients and families while they are receiving care. This is a volunteer-based program; time commitments are flexible based on your desires and availability.

Who can be a patient partner?
We are always looking for patients and family members who want to help us improve care for all people. We welcome patient partners of all ages, backgrounds and experiences who can:

  • Share insights and information about their experiences
  • See beyond personal experiences
  • Show concern for more than one issue
  • Listen well
  • Respect the perspective of others

How can I become a patient partner?
Joining our patient partner program involves submitting an application and going through a brief interview process, attending orientation and determining what type of initiative you would like to be involved in.

To learn more about becoming a patient partner, call 952-993-7139.