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Family Advisory Council Nicklaus Children's Hospital

Family Advisory Council (FAC)

What is the Family Advisory Council?

The Family Advisory Council (FAC) was formed in 1998 and serves as an advisory committee to the Board of Directors, administration, and hospital staff.
The council’s mission is to work in partnership with hospital staff to promote the delivery of Patient and Family Centered Care. FAC members identify the needs and priorities of patients and families and work on annual goals that will benefit families coming to Nicklaus Children's Hospital.
To contact FAC or for more information please call Janet Bell-Taylor at 305-669-5819.


Membership consists of individuals who subscribe to the purpose and responsibilities of Nicklaus Children’s Hospital Family Advisory Council. Family members are parents, grandparents, or guardians of children who have been patients.
To be eligible for membership FAC applicants need to attend three consecutive meetings as a prospective member, complete an application, meet with the Membership Liaison and be selected for membership. The council meets the third Tuesday of every month from 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM with the exception of the months of July and August.
In order to maintain membership, members are asked to attend a minimum of five meetings yearly plus the January meeting where the annual Goals are discussed.  If a member is unable to satisfy the minimum attendance requirements, FAC member will need to re-apply for membership in the future. 

Responsibilities of the members of the FAC 

  • Provide a vital link between Nicklaus Children’s Hospital and the families it serves.
  • Provide feedback on delivery of services for all children and their families.
  • Review issues and concerns referred to the Family Advisory Council and provide recommendations to the hospital.
  • Participate in the development of guidelines and policies
  • Work with the Department of Learning and Development Services in providing staff training sessions on Family Centered Care and Effective Communication with Patients and Families.
  • Assist in the planning of new facilities and services.
  • Volunteer to be on hospital committees and/or FAC projects. 


Family Advisory Council Accomplishments

  • Promoted family engagement in their child’s medical care
  • Developed Q.U.E.S.T (tool that encourages families to ask questions regarding care)
  • Created list of services available for patients and families while staying at Nicklaus
  • Have led activities for National Patient Safety Awareness Week
  • Led the design of the Michael Fux Family Center
  • Implemented a family awareness video/brochure on patient falls
  • Implemented family awareness brochures on pain management
  • Participated in the design of the Advanced Pediatric Care Pavilion
  • Participated in lean processes to improve communication among care providers
  • Serve as members of the Patient Safety Committee
  • Serve as members of the Board of Director’s Marketing Committee
  • Implemented of Scrappin’ Moments program
  • Host the Santa video conference call event
  • Assisted in the development of the Ambulatory Surgery Information Card
  • Reviewed MCH policies and procedures
  • Family Advisory Council rounding
  • Participated in the Customer Service Excellence Program
  • Speak at national conferences representing our FAC at Nicklaus Children’s Hospital


Testimonials from FAC Members

I got involved with the Family Advisory Council when my daughter was in the hospital in January of 2006.  At that time I was having some issues with the food (my daughter was 16 and being given steroids which made her extremely hungry).  The meals to pick from where macaroni and cheese and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches which was not desired by her or enough food for a teen.  A patient family representative was making their rounds and I took the opportunity of letting them know of my issue.  They immediately resolved the problem.  A day later they asked me if I would like to come to their meeting and see if I would like to be part of the FAC council.  It only took one meeting and I knew this council was for me, I saw the dedication that the council members had.  


After additional months of attending their meetings, I became even more impressed how the council would work together to tackle a problem and find a solution to fix it.  This council has made a great difference in ensuring that the children and their families receive comprehensive care and are treated with sensitivity and compassion.   I'm very happy and grateful to be part of the FAC.

- Vivian McCombie (parent & member of FAC)


I joined the FAC because of the experiences with our son and the need for the parent + child experience at Nicklaus Children's Hospital to be smooth, professional, caring and comfy for everyone, always.  We're back again for more hospitalization - and so I'm very glad our FAC has made the effort to make Nicklaus Children's Hospital the best it can be.  We do make a difference!
The FAC is a group of mommies and daddies and even just-grown-up patients that look for things that could be better at Nicklaus Children's Hospital.  We noticed dirty elevators and parking garages and got them cleaned.  We felt patient and their families should be treated as a package and talked with and included in the decision process and Nicklaus Children's Hospital is working toward that goal at all levels.

- Debbie Zimmerman


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