Creating an APSS

Each APSS is developed by a workgroup comprised of patient safety experts, healthcare technology professionals, hospital leaders, and patient advocates. The Foundation is proud to connect as many stakeholders as possible to focus on how these challenges can be best addressed. The Foundation’s Board of Directors also contribute and review the APSS prior to their annual dissemination.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are APSS?

APSS are a set of descriptive processes healthcare organizations are asked to implement in order to improve prevalent patient safety challenges in healthcare today.


How are the APSS topics determined?

Since 2013, the Foundation’s Midyear Planning Meeting has served as the venue for annual nomination and selection of new patient safety challenges. Patient safety challenges are known issues that highlight a serious need for the improvement and implementation of systems in order to put an end to preventable patient death in hospitals.

The annual meeting is free and open to the public. Attendees are given the opportunity to nominate preventable issues relating to patient safety within hospitals. Participants vote on top challenges, where solutions can be addressed and an APSS developed, in order to eliminate preventable deaths. The winning challenges become prominent safety topics that are addressed at the annual World Patient Safety, Science & Technology Summit.

In September 2018 the Patient Safety Movement Foundation decided to hone in on the leading causes of prevenetable deaths and instead propose one new challenge to the group for discussion. The topic of Perioperative Delirium was received well by the attendees of the Midyear Planning Meeting and will become a topic addressed at the 7th Annual World Patient Safety, Science & Technology Summit, in January 2019. A full list of APSS can be found on our website.

Sharing and implementation of the APSS is recommended and cross-pollination amongst specialties is encouraged. By sharing best practices we can achieve ZERO preventable deaths.


Who is involved in the development of the APSS?

Each APSS is developed by a workgroup comprised of patient safety experts, healthcare technology professionals, hospital leaders, and patient advocates. The Foundation is proud to connect as many stakeholders as possible to focus on how these challenges can best be addressed. The Foundation’s Board of Directors also contribute and review the APSS prior to their annual dissemination.

The participant who nominates the challenge at the Midyear Planning Meeting is responsible for leading the development and outreach to recruit workgroup leaders and members, working alongside the Foundation staff. The Foundation involves leading subject matter experts to ensure all best-practices are considered in the development of the APSS.

Workgroup Chairs are provided a scaffold/format to follow to develop the APSS. Deviations from the Foundation’s traditional format and approach is discouraged to ensure consistency among all topics.


What is expected of an APSS workgroup member?

  • Participation, on average, of three sixty-minute calls each year to review and discuss the current state and future development of APSS.
  • Review current content and facilitate new developments within APSS
  • Monitoring and responding, when appropriate, to messages in Workgroup Discussion Boards – an online forum for communication between workgroup members.

What is expected of an APSS workgroup Chair?

Workgroup Chairs should be prepared to lead three to six sixty-minute calls per year. Foundation staff will participate in all calls to facilitate the agenda and to ensure uniformity across all workgroups. The role of “Chair” can be split between co-Chairs and delegated to members of their parent organizations, if applicable.

Chairs are responsible for:

  • Research of best-practices and relevant/current guidelines to improve the APSS
  • Development of content within the APSS
  • Supervision of content generated by members of the workgroup.
  • Recruitment of workgroup members from across healthcare (clinicians, researchers, technologists, patients, etc.)

Will workgroup participation require travel?

  • A majority of communication between members is through email.
  • There are no in-person meetings required at this time (subject to change).
  • Chairs and members alike are encouraged to attend two annual Foundation events: The Midyear Planning Meeting and World Patient Safety, Science & Technology Summit.

Are Chairs or members compensated for their participation?

No, workgroup roles are voluntary. The Foundation has not and does not provide support or monetary reimbursement for their participation as a Chair or a member.

If a Chair or member is selected to participate at the annual World Patient Safety, Science & Technology Summit, they are considered a speaker and will receive complimentary registration and reimbursement for reasonable travel (economy) and accommodations at the host hotel.