Akron Children's Hospital ROUNDS / FROM EXPERIENCE Judy Doyle, Parent Advisory Council coordinator, visits with the Rapp family at Akron Children's Hospital. 5 ways families shape a hospital Here are the biggest lessons learned from one of the longest-running parent advisory councils. BY JUDY DOYLE 12 CHILDREN'S HOSPITAL S TODAY Spring 2017 M ore than 20 years ago, a parent caregiver provided the inspiration for Akron Children's Hospital to establish one of the nation's first Parent Advisory Councils (PAC). Joyce Swords' daughter, Angie, faced a difficult battle with leukemia at the hospital. After Angie passed, Swords felt lost and wanted to stay connected with the hospital to help other parents. She wrote to Akron Children's President and CEO Bill Considine and offered to help form a council of parents who would share their perspectives on hospital operations. Today, Akron Children's continues Joyce's mission to enhance patient and family-centered care through the eyes of parents. Here are five lessons the hospital has learned while working with the PAC. 1 | Their voice is crucial The idea that hospitals would openly seek parents' input on improvements was just emerging in 1995, but it made perfect sense in Swords' letter to Considine. She suggested a variety of care enhancements based on her experiences. Swords' words were an inspiration, and there was no doubt she was the right parent to lay the groundwork for the PAC to influence positive changes.