Vulnerable and marginalized populations have problems with access to health care, communication with health professionals and receipt of patient-centred care that goes beyond a bio-medical approach. These problems can be addressed by active involvement of people in the community, who are â€˜experts by lived experienceâ€™, in the education of health professionals. However, there are major institutional and cultural barriers to the inclusion of vulnerable people as educators, including different understandings of knowledge and expertise, power imbalances, discrimination and stigma, and lack of trust. We propose a knowledge interaction research project that will influence educational policy and practice. The goal is to make the authentic and autonomous voice and expertise of the patient a core part of the education of health professionals. We propose a 3-year inclusive and iterative community-based participatory research project that will inform i) the development of a mechanism for the community to engage with the university for the purpose of influencing health professional education; and ii) the development, implementation and evaluation of an educational model that leads to sustained participation by vulnerable and marginalized populations in the education of health professionals. The project will benefit the community through its ability to influence its future health and social care, and benefit the university in fulfilling its mandate for socially accountable education.
Research Team: Scott Graham SPARC; William Godolphin UBC; Cheryl hewitt, North Shore Health Board; Angela Towle UBC