• Study
  • Published January 2011

Qualities and attributes of a safe practitioner: identification of safety skills in healthcare.

Successful patient safety initiatives have focused heavily on the development of systems that support, or often force, providers to do the right thing at the right time. Greater acknowledgement of non-technical skills that serve equally important roles in safe care have led to teamwork training programs and an emphasis on leadership. Through expert consensus, this study identified a set of 73 safety skills within 18 categories that provide a helpful framework for the attributes of a safe practitioner. Surveyed clinicians then prioritized the attributes, noting that technical skills, crisis management, and honesty were the most important. The same clinicians also felt technical skills, anticipation/preparedness, and organizational skills/efficiency were the most trainable, in contrast to attributes such as humility and open-mindedness. The authors advocate for further exploration of this potential taxonomy and how it may serve as a curricular map for safety training and competency development among clinicians.

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