Sara Guastello

Sara Guastello is Director of Knowledge Management for Planetree. In this role, she draws on current research and observational field work in developing a range of educational and implementation resources to guide healthcare organizations in their endeavors to deliver patient-centered care.  Much of her work concentrates on the quality of human interactions that occur within healthcare settings, the importance of connecting healthcare personnel to the purpose and meaning of their work, and practical strategies for recasting patients and family members as true partners in care.

Sara oversees the International Patient-Centered Hospital Designation Program® and the associated Patient-Centered Merit Recognition Program, the only such program to recognize excellence in patient- and resident-centered care across the continuum of care.  The program has been endorsed by the Joint Commission as a special merit badge on its Quality Check site.

A recognized expert in patient-centered care, Sara is frequently called upon to author articles for peer-reviewed journals, present for national conferences and webinar series, and lend her insights to a variety of national projects and initiatives.  She is currently coordinating a Scientific Advisory Panel on the Evidence Base for Patient and Family Engaged Care, a group convened under the auspices of the National Academy of Medicine to compile the evidence base for the diverse dimensions of organizational culture that drive patient-and family-centered care.

Most recently, Sara has been examining how these critical elements of patient-centered care apply to primary care practice transformation through involvement in both the State of Connecticut’s Advanced Medical Home Vanguard (part of the national State Innovation Model (SIM) initiative) and the Patient, Caregiver and Community Engagement Support and Alignment Network (part of CMS’s Transforming Clinical Practice initiative.)
Sara is co-editor of The Putting Patients First Field Guide: Global Lessons in Designing and Implementing Patient-Centered Care (Jossey-Bass, 2013).

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