Unite for Safe Care

World Patient Safety Day, observed annually on 17 September, aims to raise global awareness about patient safety and call for solidarity and united action by all countries and international partners to reduce patient harm. We invite you to “Unite for Safe Care.” Whether you are a patient, advocate, health worker or leader, or just a concerned citizen. Together we are working to ensure patient and health worker safety in every nation on earth.

World Patient Safety Day
September 17, 2021
March for Patient Safety Countdown Timer Calendar/Time Icon

World Patient Safety Day

Annually on September 17th

Celebrating World Patient Safety Day


The Patient Safety Movement Foundation has proudly supported World Patient Safety Day every year since it was formally established, in 2019, by the World Health Organization.

PSMF has hosted and organized the #uniteforsafecare campaign as a way to celebrate the day. The campaign created the opportunity to educate everyone – patients, family members, frontline clinicians and administrators, and the public!

In 2021, the PSMF aligned with the WHO’s theme – Safe maternal and newborn care – and also focused on the concepts of high reliability to build health systems that strive for safe and reliable care for every patient, every time.

“Over 8,220 people die every day in hospitals worldwide from unsafe care – that’s six people every minute – and the pandemic is making the delivery of safe care even harder,” stated Mayer. “This annual event allows us to bring the community and stakeholders together to raise awareness of this issue and advocate for change to make zero preventable deaths a reality.”

David Mayer, CEO, Patient Safety Movement Foundation

2021 Plans

September 10-17, 2021
World Patient Safety Day Bi-Coastal Awareness Walk
We kicked off World Patient Safety Day by walking in Irvine, CA where the Patient Safety Movement Foundation’s headquarters is located on September 10th and then passed the baton on to PSMF CEO, Dr. David Mayer. Dr. Mayer hosted a walk from Gettysburg, PA to Washington, DC covering close to 75 miles. All these activities aimed to bring awareness to patient safety, medical error and unsafe care and educate the general public and health workers about their role in improving patient safety.

September 17, 2021
11:00 am – 3:15pm PT
Free #uniteforsafecare Virtual Event
The 2nd annual virtual program created programming for patients, families, health workers, administrators and the general public. The theme designated by the World Health Organization was “Safe maternal and newborn care” which was woven through the program, but we also explored the concepts of high reliability to underpin the necessity for a focus on creating a foundation for safe and reliable care. If you miss the event live, we will offer the opportunity to watch on YouTube. Watch for updates on where to find the program.

2020 Activities

2020 Activities

The Patient Safety Movement Foundation (PSMF) has spent significant energy raising the visibility of the World Health Organization (WHO) official World Patient Safety Day on September 17th both for the benefit of the public as well as healthcare workers and other stakeholders in the patient safety community.

The PSMF’s theme for the 2020 #uniteforsafecare campaign was Health worker safety is patient safety.

“This year has been one of the most challenging and eye-opening for the issues of safety in our healthcare systems: from effectively equipping & supporting frontline health workers in their heroic work, to equitably serving & treating patients,” said Patient Safety Movement Foundation CEO Dr. Dave Mayer. “Even before the pandemic, more than 200,000 patients died each year in America from what are considered preventable errors. Systemic problems in healthcare are at fault, and many of them — from burnout to the lack of transparency and safe processes — continuously set our health workers up for failure and error and put patient safety at risk.”

The PSMF’s 2020 World Patient Safety Day #uniteforsafecare campaign was focused on: 

  • Summer of 2020: public awareness in press and on social media
  • September 8-17: a collective, virtual physical challenge to raise awareness about patient and health worker safety
  • September 16: serve as a content collaborator for the National Association for Healthcare Quality’s annual conference, NAHQ NEXT
  • September 17: a free public virtual event which you in perpetuity can access here for free



Thank you to our co-conveners and sponsors for making the #uniteforsafecare Virtual Event possible.