July 15, 2021

PEAC Awards Funding to Patient Education Projects

The Patient Education Awards Committee (PEAC) awarded $49,932 in the last applications cycle that closed May 31.

PEAC is a multi-disciplinary committee with members from across the institution that approves funding on behalf of FRIENDS. FRIENDS is a non-profit community organization that provides financial support for patient care programs, amenities, and education projects at Michigan Medicine. Every year PEAC applies to FRIENDS with a request for funds, and once approved, allocates these funds to specific projects through a structured application process designed to ensure funded projects are impactful, meet quality standards, are feasible, and operational.  

Cost is often a barrier to providing patients and families with quality patient education materials. PEAC aims to offset the production costs of creating materials and allow the purchase of commercially available materials when appropriate. PEAC funding covers only costs payable to external vendors. In this last funding cycle, PEAC approved 17 projects:  4 projects received funds to purchase commercially available materials, and 13 projects received funds for developing patient education materials in-house.

In this cycle, PEAC funds were approved to pay for printing costs of comprehensive patient education binders, handbooks, and booklets about complex diseases and surgeries such as single ventricle heart disease, cancer in teens and young adults, eating disorders, head and neck cancer surgery, prostatectomy, tonsillectomy, and Adenoidectomy, and In Vitro Fertilization (IVF). Funds will also be used to pay for professional medical illustrations for a booklet intended for parents and caregivers of children with a tracheostomy and post-procedure instructions for patients who undergo Interpolated Cheek Flap Surgery, Forehead Flap Surgery, and thoracic outlet decompression surgery. PEAC funds will allow patients with monocular vision to receive the book “A Singular View: The Art of Seeing with One Eye”, an excellent resource discussing the unique challenges of seeing with one eye. PEAC funds will pay for brochures about pulmonary function tests from the American Thoracic Society and brochures about various sleep disorders from the American Academy of Sleep Medicine.

The majority of the projects funded in this cycle were for print materials and only 3 applications requested funding to develop audiovisual formats: a video about managing eating disorder behaviors at home and a series of 4 short videos called  “Arts & Music: From Hospital to Home” with instructions for easy and fun arts experiences that patients can incorporate into a healthy lifestyle once they leave the hospital and return to their regular life. PEAC will also fund the development of an app for people waiting for a lung transplant. In previous cycles PEAC funded apps for people waiting for kidney and liver transplants. Visit the PEAC page to learn more about projects that have been approved in this and previous PEAC cycles. 

The PEAC applications cycles are managed by the Patient Education and Health Literacy (PEHL) Program staff. PEAC Committee members review the applications and meet to discuss the applications and make decisions. In this current cycle the committee included:

  • Sandy Lemkin, RN, BSN, Clinical Care Coordinator Pranger ALS Clinic
  • Bill Palazzolo, PA-C,  director of Clinical Operations, Department of Surgery
  • Erica Raymond, MS, RDN, Associate Director, Patient Food and Nutrition Services
  • Teresa J. Keppler, MSA, RRT Administrative Director, CW Mott Respiratory Care
  • Jennifer Demucha RN, BSN, Clinical Business Analyst Senior, MiChart- Inpatient ClinDoc
  • DeAnn VanSickle, BSN, RN, PMP, Senior Project Manager, Office of Patient Experience
  • Heidi O’Neill, MS, Project Manager, Clinical Design & Innovation

Patient Education and Health Literacy Program Staff: 

Ruti Volk, MSI AHIP, Patient Education and Health Literacy (PEHL) Program Lead

Karelyn Munro, Plain Language Specialist

Amy Hyde, PEHL Informationist