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Patient- and Family-Centered Care 

Patient- and Family-Centered Care means patients, their families, doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals form a partnership that benefits everyone. A “family member” is recognized as anyone whom patients regard as significant in their lives. Families are not considered visitors, but essential participants in care and decisions that affect the total healing of the patient.  The core concepts of patient-and family- centered care are

  • Respect and Dignity. Health care providers listen to and honor patient and family perspectives and choices. Patient and family knowledge, values, beliefs and cultural backgrounds are incorporated into the planning and delivery of care.
  • Information Sharing. Health care providers communicate and share complete and unbiased information with patients and families in ways that are affirming and useful. Patients and families receive timely, complete, and accurate information in order to effectively participate in care and decision-making. 
  • Participation. Patients and families are encouraged and supported in participating in care and decision-making at the level they choose. 
  • Collaboration. Patients and families are also included on an institution-wide basis. Health care providers collaborate with patients and families in policy and program development, implementation, and evaluation; in health care facility design; and in professional education, as well as in the delivery of care.

The Goal of Patient- and Family-Centered Care

The ultimate goal of patient- and family-centered care is to create partnerships among health care practitioners, patients and families that will lead to the best outcomes and enhance the quality and safety of health care.

Here are some ways MUSC Health makes working together possible.

  • Patient and Family Advisory Councils - made up of patients, their caregivers and MUSC staff in order to encourage two-way communication in an environment of trust and respect. MUSC Health is increasing efforts to partner with patients and families in policy and program development, patient safety, quality improvement, patient experience, health care redesign, professional education, and facility design planning.
  • Health Literacy Initiative - helping patients and doctors communicate more effectively by making complex medical issues easier to understand.
  • Transparency Initiative  - provides information on clinical outcomes and costs available, so you can make informed decisions about your health care.
  • Diversity & Inclusion Initiative - creating a welcoming environment for all patients, families, employees and students.
  • Interpreter services - provides foreign language interpreter services 24 hours-a-day at no cost to patients who do not speak English or are deaf or hard of hearing during their course of medical treatment.
  • Get Well Network - provides interactive educational and entertainment videos and other resources to you at the bedside through the in-room TV, pillow speaker and keyboard in you hospital room.
  • MUSC Health MyChart offers you a personalized and secure on-line access to portions of your medical records. With MyChart, you can:
    • Communicate with your doctor's office.
    • See your lab and radiology test results.
    • Request prescription refills.
    • View your recent visit information.
    • Keep track of your health.

Patient-and Family Advisory Councils (PFAC's)

The Patient-and Family Advisory Councils (PFAC's) are a partnership of family representatives and Hospital staff members working together to meet the needs of patients and families.  The groups meets monthly, discussing issues such as patient-care, the environment, and healthcare policies and procedures.  Families provide advice and are part of the decision making process.  The main goal is to provide a collaborative environment that will enhance the experience for all patients and families at MUSC Health through patient-and family-centered care. 

  • Adult or Main Hospital PFAC
  • Institute of Psychiatry PFAC
  • Ambulatory (Adult) PFAC
  • Ambulatory (Children’s Hospital) PFAC
  • Patient Centered Medical Home PFAC
  • Children's Hospital PFAC


Membership is open to adult family members of MUSC Children’s Hospital and MUSC Health patients when openings occur. Family Advisory Council members must:

  • Be committed to the welfare of all patients and families
  • Be open to and accepting of diversity in opinions and ideas
  • Attend monthly meetings
  • Complete the online application process through Volunteer Services using the links below. The five adult PFACs all use the same application and the Children's Hospital Council has a separate one.
    • Application for the Children's Hospital Council and the Children's Hospital Ambulatory PFAC - Please note the application link opens in a new window
    • Application for the Adult or Main Hospital PFAC, Institute of Psychiatry PFAC, Ambulatory (Adult) PFAC, and Patient Centered Medical Home PFAC - Please note the application link opens in a new window


For More information on PFACs at MUSC Health:

For more information about the Patient- and Family-Centered Care department, contact Caroline DeLongchamps at 843-792-5081 or If you wish to talk with a family member of the Advisory Council we will forward your request.

MUSC: Commitment to Quality and Safety

2017 Quality & Safety Report

Digital Edition | PDF