Patient & Community Voices Workshops and Events

The Patient and Community Voices (PCV) workshop series consists of inter-professional workshops in which students learn directly from patients and community members through their stories and expertise. Workshops are developed, evaluated and refined by students, patients / community members, and UBC faculty working together in a participatory educational design.
The workshop series includes:

  • Unmet Health Care Needs: The Impact of Poorly Understood Chronic Diseases
  • Mental Health: Empathy & Compassion
  • Substance Use Care: Addressing Stigma in the Health System to Improve Patient Outcomes
  • The Lived Experience of Drug Use
  • Allies in Health: Connecting with Communities
  • Stereotypes, Truth & Moving towards Reconciliation in Health Care
  • Positive Reflections and Voices Unheard: Learning from persons living with HIV
  • A Space to Thrive: Enhancing Access to Healthcare for Teenage Girls who Live in Poverty
  • The Lived Experience of Spinal Cord Injury
  • The Caregiver’s Journey: Heartbreak and love
  • Talk is Cheap: Living and communicating with aphasia
  • Learning to Provide Better for Deaf & Hard of Hearing
  • Mental Wellness: A Way of Life
  • Trans Health 101

New workshops continue to be developed.



Stereotypes, Truth & Moving Towards Reconciliation in Health Care

In this workshop students will have the opportunity to hear from a residential school survivor, as well as in intergenerational survivor; break down and discuss professional and personal stereotypes; learn about the historical underpinnings of the Indian Residential School system; and recognize the impacts of this system in Canada. There will also be the opportunity to reflect and dialogue on the role of health care providers in reconciliation.

Partner: Indian Residential School Survivor Society

Refugee Health

Join us for an evening learning about refugee health and the ways in which healthcare providers can facilitate culturally safe and competent care. For our second refugee health workshop, our guests include Norbert Rotebuka and RésoSanté Colombie-Britannique, an organization that facilitates access to French health services in BC. Norbert arrived in Canada in 2018 from Rwanda as a refugee and he will share his story in French with the aid of RésoSanté in translating. Throughout the workshop, students will observe how medical translation is performed firsthand and will learn about the barriers refugees face in accessing care.

Partner: RésoSanté Colombie-Britannique

Substance Use Care: Addressing Stigma in the Health System to Improve Patient Outcomes

People who use substances and their families face stigma and discrimination across the system of care, impacting their ability to access life-saving harm reduction services, seek treatment, and pursue recovery. This workshop connects interprofessional UBC students and people with lived experiences of substance use to better understand how health care providers can address stigma in their own practices.

Partner: BC Centre on Substance Use (BCCSU)

A Caregiver’s Journey: Heartbreak and Love

Students are introduced to the successes and challenges of being a family caregiver for a loved one with a chronic health condition.

Partners: UBC Health Mentors Program

Disability Health

This new interprofessional workshop will look at the benefits available for people living with disabilities in BC, and share how healthcare practitioners can better assist clients. Through presenting patient stories and client interactions, it will cover common barriers for people living with disabilities and how we can make a difference with systemic advocacy.

Partners: Disability Alliance BC

Unmet Health Care Needs: The Impacts of Poorly Understood Chronic Diseases

Some disabilities are invisible. In this workshop students from different health programs will learn about three diseases that are poorly understood – Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME), Fibromyalgia (FM), and Lyme disease. People affected by these conditions often experience financial hardship, loss of identity, and have difficulty being believed by medical professionals and society. You will hear how these conditions and the difficulties in accessing effective and timely treatments can impact the daily living and quality of life of people living with or caring for a loved one with one or more of these complex chronic conditions. Approaches and resources that best support people living with ME/FM/Lyme disease in their journey will be presented.

Partners: ME Victoria Association, MEFM Society of BC, MEFM Action Network, BC Lyme Association.

Allies in Health: Connecting with Communities

This workshop is an opportunity for students from different health programs to connect with community health organizations and people who use their services. In this workshop students will be introduced to four local organizations, what they do and how health professionals can work with community organizations to better support patients and families with complex health problems.

Partners: Family Support Institute, Scleroderma Association, Community Living Society, BC Hep Network

A Space to Thrive: Enhancing Access to Healthcare for Teenage Girls who Live in Poverty

Improving health care experiences for young women and ways to reduce barriers individually and collectively are discussed in the context of intersecting forms of oppression (gender, age, colonialism, racism).

Partner: Justice for Girls

Mental Health: Empathy & Compassion

The role of empathy and compassion in recovery from serious mental illness and the importance of practicing empathetic guidelines when working with people living with a mental illness are presented.

Partner: Pathways Serious Mental Illness Society


The Lived Experience of Drug Use

This community based workshop connects UBC students with speakers who have lived experience of drug use, poverty, and overdose prevention in the DTES. Through storytelling and conversation students learn about the experiences and needs of people who use drugs and how to respond to addiction and overdose with skill and compassion.

Partner: Megaphone Speakers Bureau

Positive Reflections from Voices Unheard: Learning from Persons Living with HIV

The challenges of living with HIV are shared through personal stories and reflections of people living with HIV. Support and advocacy available in Vancouver-based community organizations serving persons living with HIV are also presented.

Partner: Positive Living BC

The Lived Experience of Spinal Cord Injury

Personal narratives and case studies are shared to illustrate the range of ways in which spinal cord injury can affect individuals, including the physical, emotional, psychosocial and financial barriers. Students will learn about the unique experiences of people living with spinal cord injury and what they can do as health professionals to provide support.

Partner: Spinal Cord Injury BC

Learning to Provide Better Care for Deaf and Hard of Hearing

Students will experience a simulation of what it is like to have difficulty hearing. Deaf and hard of hearing culture, technologies available and communication strategies are shared.

Partner: Western Institute for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing

Trans Health 101

The need for gender affirming care, community resources and strategies to provide positive healthcare experiences for transgender individuals are shared.

Partners: UBC Health Mentors and Trans Care BC

Mental Wellness: A Way of Life

Challenges and difficulties of living with mental illness and navigating the healthcare system are shared through personal stories and reflections.

Partner: Richmond Mental Health Consumer & Friends Society

Talk is Cheap: Living & Communicating with Aphasia

Through video training and small discussion groups, students will learn about aphasia and discovered valuable ways to support clients in their healthcare practice.

Partner: UBC School of Audiology and Speech Sciences (SASS) Aphasia Mentoring Program

How to Participate in one of our Workshops


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