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Volunteer Professionals Community

Advancing the patient experience through volunteer management. 

Effective July 31, 2020, The Beryl Institute entered a collaborative partnership to integrate members and resources of the  Association of Health Care Volunteer Resource Professionals (AHVRP) into our patient experience community. Previously part of the American Hospital Association (AHA), AHVRP has a 52-year history supporting healthcare volunteer services, retail operations and related support services disciplines. 

We are excited and honored to welcome AHVRP members to their new professional home. Volunteers play an integral role in elevating experience efforts globally, and we look forward to further supporting leaders of volunteer programs to expand the awareness and impact of their efforts.

Click here to access the Volunteer Professionals Community FAQs. 


Volunteer Professional Resources

September 30, 2-3 PM ET
Webinar: Well-Rounded: A Fresh Approach to Training Volunteers for Inpatient Service
Join this webinar to learn more about Augusta University Medical Center’s innovative approach to training inpatient hospital volunteers in a consistent, effective manner. Attendees will walk away with a wealth of new training ideas that can be applied to their programs as well as some helpful volunteer training materials and duty checklists. > Learn more

October 7, 2-3 PM ET
Webinar: All Aboard the Failboat: How Embracing Failure Creates Leadership Success
In this session we will discuss how to embrace occasional failures as a way to improve leadership and program effectiveness. We'll discuss how to evaluate your projects to lead to long-term success. You'll also learn how to lead others through failures. > Learn more

October 28, 2-3 PM ET
Webinar: The Digital Sherpa Program: Enriching the Patient Experience and Encouraging Self-Advocacy
Join this webinar to hear about an innovative partnership between the Patient Empowerment Network (PEN) and Moffitt Cancer Center aims to bridge the digital divide through an innovative volunteer program called the Digital Sherpa©Program. The program aims to help patients better utilize the plethora of digital tools and resources available to them and their care partners throughout treatment beyond. > Learn more

December 2, 12-1 PM ET
Webinar: Innovating your Volunteer Program Using Photography to Transform and Inspire
Join as a professional photographer presents a user-friendly, step-by-step process for non-professionals to add photography to enhance their volunteer program.  > Learn more

The Role of the Volunteer in Improving Patient Experience

This paper provides an overview of the volunteer role and engages the voices of volunteer leaders on how their volunteers are making an impact on patient experience in their organizations as well as identifying common themes in the work taking place.

September 2, 2020

Listen to the first Volunteer Professionals connection call for a discussion on how organizations are keeping volunteers relevant during this time.

The Beryl Institute Introduction and Overview

View this webinar to learn more about The Beryl Institute and the resources and benefits included with your membership. We will answer your questions and share valuable information about the resources and connections available through the Institute. You will learn how to navigate our website, access your membership benefits and get connected to our community of patient experience leaders.

Utilizing Volunteers to Improve Patient/Family Experience in Pediatric Healthcare Settings

This webinar will review the Buddy Program model, selection and training methods, along with the positive effects the program is having on college students, and pediatric patients and families across the country.

Enhancing the Patient Experience with Volunteers

This webinar will highlight best practice examples of volunteer programs that have improved bottom-line outcomes such as patient satisfaction, safety and quality and introduce a simple assessment process for determining a volunteer program's patient- and family-centeredness.

Engaging Peer Mentors to Support Patients and Families in Transition

This webinar will discuss the use of volunteer peer mentors to support patients and families going through youth care transitions at the Alberta Children’s Hospital. It will highlight the framework developed for training and supporting peer mentors to do one to one connections.  It will also describe the development of a peer led workshop “Teens Talk Transitions” designed to help prepare youth and their families for the transition from pediatric to adult care.

The Journey to Improving the Patient Experience: Utilizing Patient/Family Advisors in an Academic Medical Center

Gain insight into successful ways to involve patients and families on committees with staff through preparation of both the committee members and the advisor. Presenters will also share how to create an organized central process of recruiting potential candidates, volunteer credentialing, advisor training and management of patient engagement. 

PX Connect is an online community that allows members to network and collaborate with other patient advocates. It is a forum for exchanging ideas and resource sharing. 

Volunteers and the Patient Experience

Doug Della Pietra, M.Div., CPXP, Manager, Volunteer and Guest Services at Rochester General Hospital, shares ways to better align volunteers and the volunteer program with an organization’s efforts to improve the patient, family, resident and client experiences.

Creating a Process for Patient-Family Members to be a Part of Your Improvement Work

Ann Hagensen, RN, Project Manager, Patient Relations & Service and Kathy Leicester, Patient and Family Volunteer, Virginia Mason Medical Center, share three components of wisdom regarding equal partnerships with patients and families.

How are you effectively including volunteers in your patient experience efforts?

This topic call began with our guest expert, Doug Della Pietra providing a profile and brief overview of the activities and roles volunteers play both pre 1980 and 1980 to present. 

How are you using personal storytelling to positively impact the Human Experience in Healthcare?

Every person has a story to tell. They may choose to share a “Health Story” or a “Life Story” or just individual thoughts or feelings today. How can clinicians empower people to share their thoughts, feelings, and life experiences (even privately) to impact their own wellbeing? What are ways that acute and post-acute settings can easily engage patients, family, and volunteers to improve the patient experience?

How do you Utilize Ambassadors/Advocate/Liaisons in the Emergency Department?

We were joined by guest expert Virgie Mosley. Virgie kicked off the conversation by providing a brief overview of what she is doing related around our topic today.

What are you doing to engage patients and family in your patient experience efforts?

This topic call shares different ways to engage patients and family in your patient experience efforts in meaningful ways including patient advisory groups and including patients in functional patient experience teams. 

Volunteer contributions in the emergency department: A scoping review

The objective  of this scoping review was to identify published and unpublished reports that described volunteer programs in the emergency department (ED) and determine how these programs impacted patient experiences or outcomes. 

Does the use of volunteers and playbooks in pediatric primary care clinic waiting rooms influence patient experience?

The purpose of this secondary data analysis was (1) to understand the use of a playbook as a positive distraction technique and (2) to explore the use of volunteers in the waiting room of an outpatient pediatric clinic setting. Specifically, the study examined the impact on perceived wait time, overall quality of care, and patient experience in a convenience sample of patients. 

The Integral Role of Volunteers in Caring for Cancer Patients

This On the Road took us to Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston, Massachusetts, an organization internationally renowned for its equal commitment to patient care and research. We were intrigued to learn that Dana-Farber was deeply involved in nearly half of the 75 cancer drugs approved by the FDA in 2017 for use in cancer patients.  The organization is quick to acknowledge that leading-edge research is informed by patient care – and patient care relies on leading-edge research. The unique focus on both innovation and personal relationships creates an environment resonating trust and compassion, and we were especially inspired to see the team attributes much of its patient experience success to the involvement of volunteers.

There are many regional organizations providing connection and resources for Volunteer Professionals. While not directly affiliated with The Beryl Institute we are excited to support and collaborate with these organizations and will periodically share their information and events.

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The Beryl Institute
1831 12th Avenue South, #212
Nashville, TN 37203