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PSNet: Patient Safety Network
Journal Article

Patient safety: what about the patient?

Vincent CA, Coulter A. Quality & safety in health care. 2002;11:76-80.

In this perspective, Vincent and Coulter highlight the need for increased patient involvement in the patient safety movement. The authors emphasize that neither the patient’s role in preventing errors nor the impact of these errors on patients and their families has been adequately addressed. The authors outline the patient’s role in increasing diagnostic accuracy, determining appropriate treatment, choosing experienced providers, ensuring effective treatment and disease management, and monitoring adverse events. In addition, the authors explain that psychological injury from medical errors must be acknowledged and dealt with appropriately, including honest disclosure, apology, continued support, and plans for preventing future events.