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Perspectives

Our Perspectives on Safety section features expert viewpoints on current themes in patient safety, including interviews and written essays published monthly. Annual Perspectives highlight vital and emerging patient safety topics.

Latest Perspectives

Remle Crowe, PhD, NREMT, is the Director of Clinical and Operational Research at ESO. In her professional role, she provides strategic direction for the research mission of the organization, including oversight of a warehouse research data set of de... Read More

Michael L. Millenson is the President of Health Quality Advisors LLC, author of the critically acclaimed book Demanding Medical Excellence: Doctors and Accountability in the Information Age, and an adjunct associate professor of medicine at... Read More

Errors in medication management and administration are major threats to patient safety. This piece explores issues with opioid and nursing-sensitive medication safety as well as medication safety in older adults. Future research directions in... Read More

All Perspectives (333)

1 - 20 of 29 Results

This piece discusses Just Culture in EMS, where variation exists across systems, and challenges and opportunities to enhancing safety event reporting. 

Chris Cebollero, BS, CCEMT-P, is the President and CEO of Cebollero & Associates Consulting Group. He has served as a paramedic for over 20 years, and in his last operational role he was the Chief of EMS at Christian Hospital in North St. Louis. We spoke with him about the status of safety culture in EMS and challenge associated with safety event reporting.

This piece discusses the concept of Safety Across the Board and reviews the three key components necessary for successful implementation in a healthcare organization: culture, strong safety processes, and engagement.

Edwin Loftin, DNP, MBA, RN, NEA-BC-FACHE is the Senior Vice President of Integrated and Acute Care Services and the Chief Nursing Officer (CNO) at Parrish Medical Center in Titusville, Florida. We spoke with him about his experiences with the concept of safety across the board at his medical center.

Dr. McDonald is President of the Center for Open and Honest Communication at the MedStar Institute for Quality and Safety, and Adjunct Professor of Law at Loyola University-Chicago School of Law and the Beazley Institute for Health Law and Policy. An internationally recognized patient safety expert, he served as a lead architect for the Communication and Optimal Resolution (CANDOR) toolkit, supported by AHRQ. We spoke with him about lessons learned over the years regarding event reporting and his insights about building and disseminating communication-and-resolution programs.
Rachel J. Stern, MD, and Urmimala Sarkar, MD |
Patient engagement in safety has evolved from obscurity to maturity over the past two decades. This Annual Perspective highlights emerging approaches to engaging patients and caregivers in safety efforts, including novel technological innovations, and summarizes the existing evidence on the efficacy of such approaches.
A leading expert on evidence-based patient safety strategies and translating research into practice, Dr. Shojania is the Director of the University of Toronto Centre for Patient Safety and the new editor of BMJ Quality and Safety.
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.
Patrice Spath, BA, RHIT, and William Minogue, MD |
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.
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.
Sir Liam Donaldson, MD, MSc, is England's Chief Medical Officer, a post often referred to as "the Nation's Doctor" (similar to the role of the U.S. Surgeon General). Trained as a surgeon, Sir Liam has been an inspirational leader in public health and health care quality in the United Kingdom for two decades. He has also emerged as a world leader in the patient safety field, authoring or commissioning dozens of influential reports, and serving as the founding chair of the World Health Organization's World Alliance for Patient Safety. We spoke to him about patient safety from an international perspective.
Susan Burnett and Charles Vincent, PhD |
The dangers of health care in Britain have been long understood. Systematic data collection of the hazards of health care can be traced back at least to the time of Florence Nightingale's publications in the 1860s. In this short paper, we outline the evolution of patient safety and trace its development and progress over the last 10 years in Britain, where a nationalized health service and sustained commitment from Chief Medical Officer Sir Liam Donaldson and other senior figures have brought patient safety to considerable prominence.
Rosemary Gibson, MSc |
Patients have three roles in improving patient safety: helping to ensure their own safety, working with health care organizations to improve safety at the organization and unit level, and advocating as citizens for public reporting and accountability of hospital and health system performance. The following case illustrates how patients can help ensure their own safety.
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.