Balancing Time and Commitments

In this topic page, both patients and researchers describe having to find a balance between the time needed for partnership commitments and that for other work and personal commitments. While some of the patients described having sufficient time, others felt challenged to manage their various commitments as a research partner, their own work, studies and/or family obligations. 


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The need for flexibility

Balancing time and commitments

We meet online every two months, and that meeting time is set by sending out a survey and seeing who’s available, when, within a specific timeframe, and then the one when most people are available is the one that turns up, and all of those so far, I’ve been able to make, so that’s been good.

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The need for flexibility

Patients appreciated when there was flexibility in the timing of meetings, for example scheduling evening meetings or being able to indicate preferred times through an online poll. It was also appreciated when facilitators respected the timelines for the meetings, and when there was an ability to meet online or ensuring that meetings were not too long. These kind of strategies helped patients to balance their participation with their personal obligations. 

Balancing time and commitments

And then we also worked, like set up meeting times that were like best for them, because one of them is a student and one of them has a full-time government job, so there's like only certain days and times that can work for meetings and stuff, so we tried to like base it around them and what they wanted as much as possible.

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Balancing time and commitments

The flexibility was key. I really don’t think that I could’ve done it without the flexibility. I needed that flexibility in terms of when the meetings were set, the team was really very respectful of how I was feeling and my time, they – I would always be included in terms of setting meeting dates.

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Balancing time and commitments

So I'm generally someone that I say yes to pretty much everything and I tend to make things work. So no matter the schedule or whatever my schedule was, being a patient advisor was not — I made sure that it was not going to interfere with my work or my school and whatnot, because I’m still in school.

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At times the workload for the patient engagement activities could also become overwhelming. 

Balancing time and commitments

The negative aspects, depending on the project, has probably been in some cases the time commitment. [Pause] Yeah, I really think that’s – that’s it. Sometimes the amount of material that had to be reviewed, and the time commitment, sometimes, but not always, and not always in the projects that require that. It just depended.

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Last updated
2020-03
Review date
2022-03

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