Patient-Centred Measurement

For more than 15 years, the province of BC has been supporting efforts to ensure that health care data (collected about people's experiences and outcomes) reflects the expert knowledge and skills of a caring team of providers who provide both technically competent and compassionate health care. A province-wide, coordinated survey program has been in place since 2002, providing an important source of information that contributes to an understanding of what matters to patients. The goal of the program has been to give those who use BC’s healthcare services, patients and their families, a voice in improving the quality of the care and services they receive. The Patient-Centred Measurement Methods Cluster is a unique partnership between the BC Patient-Centred Measurement Working Group (BCPCMWG) and the BC SUPPORT Unit.

News & Updates

With funding from the Patient-Centred Measurement Methods Cluster, a part-time post-doctoral Fellowship position has been created to undertake analytical projects and capacity-building related to measurement validation, with a particular focus on statistical methods for missing data and representativeness, using patient-centred measurement data collected by the BC Office of Patient-Centred Measurement surveys on behalf of BC’s health authorities and the Ministry of Health.

We are pleased to announce our first post-doctoral fellow into this position: meet Pamela Woitschach!

Pamela completed her Master’s degree in health and social research methodology and measurement, and her PhD on psychometrics and statistical methods with contributions to policy studies in the social sciences - both from the Complutense University of Madrid, Spain. Pamela has been a visiting scholar at UBC from 2017-2019 in the Measurement, Evaluation & Research Methodology (MERM) Program and is currently a post-doctoral research fellow in MERM—under the direction of Dr Bruno Zumbo.

Pamela’s program of research focuses on research methods for large-scale measurement and evaluation. She has published papers in international peer-reviewed journals, presented at international conferences, and has been commissioned on 7 occasions to lead national studies, write reports and analytical studies for federal government ministries in Spain and in her home country of Paraguay. Drs. Rick Sawatzky and Bruno Zumbo will provide oversight to Pamela’s Fellowship activities. She will be based at the BC Office of Patient-Centred Measurement (Providence Health Care) and at the MERM Program at UBC.

Themes for Projects

Themes were generated through stakeholder consultation. We invited input on the scoping review of the literature and environmental scan we conducted between March and July to develop a working definition of “Patient-Centred Measurement”.  We sought input on priorities for research to advance the science of PCM methods, through:

  • Telephone interviews with subject-matter experts locally, provincially, nationally and internationally (July – September 2018);
  • In-person focus groups throughout BC (each health authority) with patients/families (September 2018 to February 2019);
  • In-person focus groups throughout BC (each health authority) with health researchers/clinicians/decision-makers (September 2018 to February 2019).

View the resulting themes here.


A “made in BC” project, conducted by Dr. Nick Bansback with an international team of experts, to develop societal values and population norms for the VR-12 generic health status instrument is underway.

  • The VR-12 measures the health of a population.  Population norms are derived by asking a large representative sample of the general population to self-report their health status using the VR-12. Value sets reflect the preferences of the general public in each country and a currently not available for the VR-12.  Please contact Rick Sawatzky, if you would like more information (

Survey responses collected by the BCPCMWG since 2010 are being transferred to the Ministry of Health’s central data warehouse, Healthideas. 

  • This rich data source is now available to Ministry of Health and health authority analysts and researchers (via Population Data BC).  Please contact Lena Cuthbertson, if you would like more information (


View the recording of the February 25th PCM webinar call for proposals.

To view the PCM Webinar Call for Proposal slide deck, click here.




Lead and Advisor

Cluster Lead: Dr. Rick Sawatzky
To find out more about Rick Sawatzky, please click here.

Dr. Sawatzky holds a Canada Research Chair in Person-Centred Outcomes at Trinity Western University (TWU) and is a professor in TWU’s School of Nursing.  He is also Patient-Reported Outcomes (PRO) Lead at the UBC Centre for Health Evaluation and Outcome Sciences (CHEOS). His extensive research program focuses on the validation and use of person-centred health outcomes measures and quality of life assessment instruments. Dr. Sawatzky’s work has a strong emphasis on integrating a palliative approach to care for people who have chronic life-limiting illnesses, and he is currently developing and evaluating statistical methods for patient-reported outcomes measurement in diverse populations.

Advisor: Dr. Lena Cuthbertson
To find out more about Lena Cuthbertson, please click here