Patient-Centred Practice

There is a broad trust in society that medical professionals are committed to patient care.  For physicians, it is part of the Hippocratic Oath that many recite when in medical school.  Even though our commitment to the treatment of disease in our patients is strengthened throughout training and in practice, there is little focus in the healthcare system on the teaching of patient-centred care design.  At Acumen Clinic, our mission is to design care that puts the patient at the centre, and we also work to disseminate that philosophy to the broader healthcare ecosystem.  We want to define the concept of patient-centred care so readers will know what patient-centred programs look like and our efforts to put Acumen Clinic at the front of innovation in patient-centred care in Canada. We hope that it encourages comments and suggestions to improve the concept of patient-centredness by bringing in a patient and societal voice.


Important questions to ask before designing a Patient-Centred Care model:


  1.     Who is your customer?
  2.     Who are your users?
  3.     What is the ultimate goal of the model?


For Acumen Clinic, our customer is the patient.  Serving the patient is unique in Canada given that specialists practicing in the public system have the primary care provider as their customer when designing programs.  For Acumen Clinic, primary care providers, physiotherapists and other allied health professionals are our partners.  We want to work as a team and make it easy to put the patient first in decisions about the organization of care in our system and pathways.


At Acumen Clinic, we’ve also committed to improving patient outcomes, and more broadly maximizing patient value.  We are unique at Acumen in that we consider even patients we aren’t treating (the whole population of sports, shoulder and elbow patients) in the design of care.  That means that we worry about providing value to more than just the patient in front of us through our website, business systems and community outreach. 


In defining Patient-Centered Care we believe that caring for patients in meaningful and valuable ways should be at the forefront. To our team, that means good communication so patients’ values guide clinical decisions, along with high end coordination of care, education (evidence-based practice), continuity of care, and proper transitions through our Sport Medicine Model and approach (Athletic Therapist and Strength and Conditioning Coaches).


With a shift in healthcare we want to empower patients for the best possible outcomes! People can trust the Acumen Clinic and Team will support and guide individuals through their journey. 


By: Dr. Jesse Slade Shantz, MD, and LeeAnne Gullett, CAT(C)