Perspectives on Safety
Narrow Results Clear All
- Communication Improvement 9
- Culture of Safety 16
- Education and Training 5
- Error Reporting and Analysis 11
- Human Factors Engineering 5
- Legal and Policy Approaches 9
- Quality Improvement Strategies 10
- Teamwork 8
- Technologic Approaches 3
- Device-related Complications 1
- Identification Errors 1
- Medical Complications 3
- Medication Safety 2
- Psychological and Social Complications 3
- Surgical Complications 2
- Health Care Executives and Administrators
- Health Care Providers 11
Non-Health Care Professionals
- Media 1
- Patients 1
Patient Advocacy, June 2014
Dave deBronkart, known as e-Patient Dave, is a co-founder and co-chair of the Society for Participatory Medicine and coauthor of Let Patients Help: A Patient Engagement Handbook. We spoke with him about engaging patients in their care and allowing patients to access their medical records.
Hand Hygiene, May 2014
Dr. Pittet is Director of the Infection Control Programme and WHO Collaborating Centre on Patient Safety at the University of Geneva Hospitals, Switzerland. We spoke with him about hand hygiene in health care, including how to implement culture change and improve safety.
Interruptions and Distractions in Health Care, February 2014
Dr. Coiera, a professor at the University of New South Wales, has extensively researched and written about clinical communication processes and information systems. We spoke with him about how interruptions and distractions in the clinical environment influence patient safety.
Update on Just Culture, September 2013
Professor Sidney Dekker has done revolutionary work on human error and safety and written several bestselling books on system failure and just culture.
What We've Learned About Leveraging Leadership and Culture to Affect Change and Improve Patient Safety
with commentary by Sara J. Singer, MBA, PhD, Update on Just Culture, September 2013
This piece explores how leaders can promote cultural changes to improve patient safety.
Update on Safety Culture, July-August 2013
J. Bryan Sexton, PhD, is director of the Patient Safety Center for the Duke University Health System and an international expert in safety culture and clinician burnout.
with commentary by Allan Frankel, MD, and Michael Leonard, MD, Update on Safety Culture, July-August 2013
This piece explores how safety culture work has evolved over the past decade.
with commentary by Susan D. Scott RN, MSN, The Second Victim, May 2011
This piece discusses efforts to ameliorate the impact of errors on providers, including an innovative program to counsel second victims.
High-Risk Physicians and Disruptive Behaviors, December 2009
Gerald B. Hickson, MD, is one of the world's leading experts on physician behavior and its connection to clinical outcomes and medical malpractice. He is a Professor at the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, where he is also the Joseph C. Ross Chair in Medical Education and Administration, Associate Dean for Clinical Affairs, Director of the Vanderbilt Center for Patient and Professional Advocacy, and Director of Clinical Risk and Loss Prevention. We asked him to speak with us about high-risk physicians and malpractice.
with commentary by Alan H. Rosenstein, MD, MBA; Michelle O'Daniel, MSG, MHA, High-Risk Physicians and Disruptive Behaviors, December 2009
The 1999 Institute of Medicine report highlighted the need for health care providers to address the serious concerns raised about the quality and safety of patient care being provided in our health care organizations. Organizations responded by looking at new ways to fix the system, mostly through the introduction of new technologies and system/process redesign. Advances have been made, but there are still significant opportunities for improvement. Is the barrier poor system or process design, or is it related to addressing basic human behaviors?
Patient Disclosure and Apology, January 2009
Thomas H. Gallagher, MD, is Associate Professor in the Department of Medicine and the Department of Medical History and Ethics at the University of Washington in Seattle. Dr. Gallagher's current research covers the disclosure of medical errors, examining patients' and doctors' attitudes about disclosure, how best to train providers to disclose and apologize for errors, and how to create a system that promotes appropriate disclosure. We asked him to speak with us about new developments in the field of patient disclosure and apologies.
with commentary by Allen Kachalia, MD, JD, Patient Disclosure and Apology, January 2009
Disclosure of medical error is inextricably linked to today's patient safety efforts. Health care experts advocate that greater disclosure is necessary to achieve complete transparency and ameliorate barriers to error reporting.(1,2) Of course, the ethical obligations triggered by the occurrence of a medical error are not to be overlooked. Principles of fiduciary duty, patient autonomy, and equity all strongly support the ethical and moral mandate for physicians to disclose harmful errors to patients.(3) These principles weigh in favor of disclosure even if it is contrary to the physician's interests (e.g., malpractice risk or reputation). As a result, the issue of disclosure garners tremendous attention in today's medical literature.
Does Root Cause Analysis Work?, July 2008
Albert Wu, MD, MPH, is Professor of Health Policy and Management at the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health and is presently working with the World Health Organization's World Alliance for Patient Safety, based in Geneva. He is a leading expert on several aspects of patient safety, including disclosure and evaluation. He recently wrote a commentary on the use of root cause analysis in patient safety in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).
with commentary by Patrice Spath, BA, RHIT, and William Minogue, MD, Does Root Cause Analysis Work?, July 2008
Throughout most of his life, 19th century French chemist Louis Pasteur insisted that germs were the cause of disease, not the body. It wasn't until Pasteur was nearing the end of his life that he came to believe just the opposite. After reaching this conclusion, he declined treatment for potentially curable pneumonia, reportedly saying, "It is the soil, not the seed."(1) In other words, a germ (the seed) causes disease when our bodies (the soil) provide a hospitable environment.
Just Culture, October 2007
An engineer and an attorney by training, David Marx, JD, is president of Outcome Engineering, a risk management firm. After a career focused on safety assessment and improvement in aviation, he has spent the last decade focusing on the interface between systems engineering, human factors, and the law. In 2001, he wrote a seminal paper describing the concept of just culture, which became a focal point for efforts to reconcile notions of "no blame" and "accountability." He has gone on to form the "Just Culture Community" to address these issues at health care institutions around the country.
with commentary by Alison H. Page, MS, MHA, Just Culture, October 2007
We've all been there...something goes wrong, a patient is harmed, and we, as medical directors, managers, and administrators, are forced to judge the behavioral choices of another human being. Most of the time, we conduct this complex leadership function guided by little more than vague policies, personal beliefs, and intuition. Frequently, we are frustrated by the fact that many other providers have made the same mistake or behavioral choice, with no adverse outcome to the patient, and the behavior was overlooked. Quite understandably, the staff is frustrated by what appears to be inconsistent, irrational decision-making by leadership. The "just culture" concept teaches us to shift our attention from retrospective judgment of others, focused on the severity of the outcome, to real-time evaluation of behavioral choices in a rational and organized manner.
Safety Culture, December 2006
J. Bryan Sexton, PhD, MA, is Assistant Professor, Department of Anesthesiology and Critical Care Medicine, at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Trained as a social psychologist, he has become one of the world's foremost authorities on the role of culture in patient safety. He developed the widely used Safety Attitudes Questionnaire and is one of the lead investigators of the Michigan Keystone ICU project, which aims to change practice and culture in intensive care units (ICUs) throughout the state. His research examines the connections between attitudes, behaviors, and outcomes in high-risk team environments, particularly aviation and medicine. We asked him to speak with us about safety climate surveys and efforts to change safety culture.
with commentary by Timothy J. Hoff, PhD, Safety Culture, December 2006
Safety cultures are the holy grail in any risky industry. Like all holy grails, they can never be fully realized. This is particularly the case in health care. Why? Health care organizations struggle with too many competing demands to make safety the only...
Human Factors, November 2006
Don Norman, PhD, is well known for his books "The Design of Everyday Things" and "Emotional Design." Although not focused on health care, his work introduced many in health care to the concepts of human factors engineering and to the importance of thoughtful design in ensuring that technology is used for its intended purposes. He is cofounder of the Nielsen Norman Group, professor at Northwestern University, and former vice president of Apple Computer. Dr. Norman is now writing "The Design of Future Things," discussing the role that automation will play in our everyday lives. We asked Dr. Norman to speak with us about human-centered design.
with commentary by Ashish K. Jha, MD, MPH, The Transformation of Patient Safety at the VA, September 2006
Five years after the landmark Crossing the Quality Chasm report by the Institute of Medicine (IOM), the quality and safety of health care in the United States remains far from ideal.(1) It is easy to feel pessimistic. Can health care organizations really...