Letter from the Chairman, July 2019

Dear PatientAiders,

Summer is a time when a lot of us take a deep breath; the first half of the year is over and with children out of school, it’s a good time to spend time with our families. This sometimes means things move a little slower. That isn’t the case this year.

The World Health Organization’s resolution acknowledging patient safety as a priority has increased momentum within the healthcare industry. It’s an exciting time to be involved in ending preventable deaths and taking the necessary steps to keep patients safe.

We’re also gearing up for our Midyear Planning Meeting on September 17th, which coincides with World Patient Safety Day. If you’re interested in attending, be sure to request an invitation at our website. Hope to see you there.

The U.S. FDA provided a letter of support for the principle of openly sharing data through programs like our own Open Data Pledge. Shared data will help drive the development of algorithms to identify and prevent patient harm and create better processes that will improve patient outcomes.

We have also received our first Curriculum Commitments (APSS #17) from Chapman University School of Pharmacy, Universidad Autónoma de México School of Medicine, San Diego State University School of Nursing and Geisinger Commonwealth School of Medicine. This commitment helps to ensure that the next generation of healthcare professionals makes patient safety a priority and keeps it top of mind.

This month’s Spotlight is on the National Autonomous University of Mexico’s (UNAM) medical school, one of the first schools to make a commitment to our curriculum. UNAM is one of the oldest medical schools in the Americas, dating back to the 1500s, and has formally included training on patient safety since 2011. An important aspect of the training is simulations, including patient safety techniques.

The blog for this month, Drews Story: A Movement to Eliminate Preventable Death from Unplanned Extubation by Dr. Art Kanowitz, illustrates the dangers of unplanned extubations and how following standardized policies and procedures (APSS #8B) can make a difference.

As you can see, significant progress continues to be made and the pace is quickening. It’s been 20 years since the release of To Err is Human. While we’ve come some distance since that day, we still have work to do. If you haven’t yet implemented our 17 Actionable Patient Safety Solutions (APSS), it’s time to get started. Let’s save lives and have a great summer. Contact Sarah Miller to set up time to discuss how you can make a commitment to zero preventable deaths for our patients, our loved ones.

-Joe