Citizen briefs and panels
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Citizen Panels

Citizen briefs and panels

As one of its core programs, the Forum convenes citizen panels to provide the opportunity for citizens to make informed judgements about addressing high-priority health-related issues. Building around a deliberative dialogue approach, this innovative program helps to uncover unique understandings of these issues and spark insights about viable solutions that are aligned with citizens’ values and preferences. Citizen panels can be organized at the local, regional, provincial or national level and may combine in-person with online/teleconferencing meetings.

Steps in a citizen panel

  • Consulting with key stakeholders: We work with a steering committee created specifically for each panel and conduct 15-20 key informants to clarify the issue and identify possible ways to address it.
  • Preparing a citizen brief: We prepare and circulate to panel participants a plain-language citizen brief that mobilizes relevant research evidence about an issue, options for addressing it, and key implementation considerations. Citizen briefs are made publicly available after the event has taken place.
  • Convening the citizen panel: We convene a group of 10 to 16 (and occasionally several such groups to discuss the same topic) for an off-the-record deliberation where they can bring their own views and experiences to bear on the issue, learn from the evidence and from others’ views and experiences, share their newly informed views and make informed judgements about how to address the issue based on their values and preferences.
  • Preparing a panel summary: We prepare and circulate a panel summary, which is a thematic analysis of the deliberations during the citizen panel. This document, along with a ‘topic overview’ that provides a brief plain-language summary of the key messages from the panel summary, is made publicly available on the Forum's website. We also provide customized post-event briefings to partners involved in funding or convening the panel, to further prepare them to address the issue.
  • Evaluating key features of the citizen brief and citizen panel: We evaluate the key features of the citizen brief and citizen panel to contribute to our collective understanding about how citizens can best be engaged in shaping how society addresses health issues.

For more detail about each of the steps, please see our two-page overview of our approach to convening citizen panels.

For more information on the citizen panel program, contact mhf@mcmaster.ca

Following is a list of topics for future citizen panels, and a list of the most recent panels and the related products available.

Recent citizen panels

  • Title: Enhancing Access to Patient-centred Primary Care in Ontario
    Date: Saturday, October 15, 2016
    Sponsors: Ontario SPOR SUPPORT Unit (OSSU), which is supported by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research and the Government of Ontario
    Products

  • Title: Planning for the Future Health Workforce of Ontario
    Date: Saturday, September 17, 2016
    Sponsors: The Government of Ontario and the Ontario SPOR SUPPORT Unit (OSSU), which is supported by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and the Province of Ontario
    Products

  • Title: Strengthening Care for Frail Older Adults in Canada
    Date: Saturday, August 13, 2016
    Sponsors: Canadian Institutes of Health Research (grant number 339657), and McMaster University’s Labarge Optimal Aging Initiative
    Products

  • Title: Defining the Mental Health and Addictions ‘Basket of Core Services’ to be Publicly Funded in Ontario
    Date: Tuesday, July 26, 2016
    Sponsors: The Government of Ontario and the Ontario SPOR Support Unit (OSSU)
    Products

  • Title: Strengthening Care for People with Chronic Diseases in Ontario
    Date: Saturday, April 2, 2016
    Sponsors: Ontario Medical Association and McMaster University’s Labarge Optimal Aging Initiative
    Products

  • Title: Integrating Data Across Sectors for Public Service Improvement in Ontario
    Date: Saturday, March 5, 2016
    Sponsors: The Government of Ontario (through a Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care Health System Research Fund grant entitled Harnessing Evidence and Values for Health System Excellence)
    Products

  • Title: Building a Primary-Care ‘Home’ for Every Ontarian
    Date: Saturday, February 6, 2016
    Sponsors: The Ontario College of Family Physicians (OCFP) and McMaster University’s Labarge Optimal Aging Initiative
    Products

  • Title: Exploring Models for Pharmacist Prescribing in Ontario
    Date: Saturday, October 17, 2015
    Sponsors: McMaster University’s Labarge Optimal Aging Initiative and the Government of Ontario (through a Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care Health System Research Fund grant entitled Harnessing Evidence and Values for Health System Excellence) 
    Products

  • Title: Improving Pain and Symptom Management in Cancer Care in Ontario
    Date: Saturday, September 19, 2015
    Sponsors: McMaster University’s Labarge Optimal Aging Initiative and the Government of Ontario (through a Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care Health System Research Fund grant entitled Harnessing Evidence and Values for Health System Excellence)
    Products

  • Title: Engaging Communities in Setting Priorities for Home and Community Care in Northeastern Ontario
    Date: Tuesday, August 18, 2015, 12:00 AM - Thursday, August 20, 2015, 12:00 AM
    Sponsors: The Government of Ontario through two Health System Research Fund grants: 1) “Improving Health Equity for Northern Ontarians: Applied Research with Vulnerable Populations,” based at the Centre for Rural and Northern Health Research (CRaNHR) at Laurentian University and 2) “Harnessing evidence and values for health system excellence,” an interdisciplinary research and knowledge-translation program at McMaster University; North East Community Care Access Centre; McMaster University’s Labarge Optimal Aging Initiative.
    Products

  • Title: Addressing Nutritional Risk Among Older Adults in Ontario
    Date: Saturday, January 24, 2015
    Sponsors: Labarge Optimal Aging Initiative; Government of Ontario through a Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care Health System Research Fund grant entitled Harnessing Evidence and Values for Health System Excellence
    Products

  • Title: Sharing Online Health Information with Older Adults in Canada
    Date: Saturday, November 22, 2014
    Sponsors: McMaster University's Labarge Optimal Aging Initiative
    Products

  • Title: Improving Care and Support for Unpaid Caregivers in Ontario
    Date: Saturday, November 8, 2014
    Sponsors: McMaster University's Labarge Optimal Aging Initiative; Government of Ontario (through a Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care Health System Research Fund grant entitled Harnessing Evidence and Values for Health System Excellence)
    Products

  • Title: Improving the Delivery of Complex Cancer Surgeries in Canada (the Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island panel)
    Date: Saturday, October 18, 2014
    Sponsors: Canadian Partnership Against Cancer
    Products

  • Title: Improving the Delivery of Complex Cancer Surgeries in Canada (the Edmonton, Alberta panel)
    Date: Saturday, October 4, 2014
    Sponsors: Canadian Partnership Against Cancer
    Products

  • Title: Improving the Delivery of Complex Cancer Surgeries in Canada (the Hamilton, Ontario panel)
    Date: Saturday, September 20, 2014
    Sponsors: Canadian Partnership Against Cancer
    Products

View all

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