To enhance the development of our Network activities, IPRO ESRD Network of the Ohio River Valley (Network 9) works with committed and informed patients who advise and assist in promoting quality of care for their fellow patients- at both the State and National level. These patients will serve as Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) and will assist the Networks in developing patient-centered projects mandated by the Centers of Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS).Our commitment to patient and family engagement is centered on our goal of improving quality and safety of care.

“There is a consensus among sources that patient and family engagement involves including “the perspectives of patients and families directly into the planning, delivery and evaluation of healthcare, thereby improving the quality and safety of the care provided.” Although patient and family engagement may be implemented differently in different healthcare settings, all activities should support the patient’s values, preferences, and expressed needs; “provide clear, high quality information and education for the patient and family; include coordinated and integrated care and involvement of family members and friends, as appropriate” and incorporate “the core concepts of dignity and respect, information sharing, active patient participation in their care, and collaboration.”1

There are two direct methods the Network utilizes to foster patient and family engagement at the Network level. One method is through the development of a Patient Advisory Committee. The other method is the involvement of patient or care giver subject matter experts in the development and review of the Network quality improvement activities.

Patient Advisory Committee:
What is the Patient Advisory Committee (PAC)?

  • The PAC is a network regional organization of patients or family members who volunteer his/her time to represent the Network to their facility and their facility to the Network.

How can I get involved in the PAC?

What is a subject matter expert (SME)?

  • A patient or care giver who is interested in working to improve the quality of care for fellow patients and assist the Network in the development of patient centered projects.

What is the role of an SME?

  • SME’s will attend Network webinars and assist with the review and development of quality improvement educational materials for patients and their care givers.

How can I become a Subject Matter Expert?


1 Institute for Patient-and Family-Centered Care. (no date) Advancing the Practice of Patient-and Family-Centered Care in Hospitals-How to Get Started. Retrieved December 30, 2014, from Institute for Patient-and Family-Centered Care:
2 Committee on Quality of Health Care in America. Institute of Medicine. (2001). Crossing the quality chasm: a new health system for the 21st century (1st edition). Washington, DC: National Academies Press.

IPRO ESRD Network of the Ohio River Valley
Network 9 (IN, KY, OH)
3201 Enterprise Parkway, Suite 210
Beachwood, OH 44122
Main Phone: 216-593-0001
Toll-Free Patient Line: 844-819-3010
Fax: 216-593-0101
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Andrea Bates, LSW, MSW
Patient Services Director

Brenda Taylor-Hines, MSW
Patient Services Coordinator