This Week at IHI: Astronaut Scott Kelly National Forum keynote, staff burnout and resilience, systems of safety
This Week at the Institute for Healthcare Improvement
October 24, 2016
How Much Do You Know
about Astronaut Scott Kelly?

You may be aware that Captain Scott Kelly, the retired NASA astronaut who returned from a year in space earlier in 2016, will be a keynote speaker at IHI’s 28th Annual National Forum (December 4-7). But did you know he grew one-and-a-half inches during his historic mission aboard the International Space Station? At the Forum you’re guaranteed to learn even more intriguing things about astronaut Scott Kelly — including what he learned about perseverance, leadership, and teamwork. So, please join us in Orlando!

Don’t Blame Staff for Burnout —
It’s a Systems Issue

Decades ago, IHI’s Don Berwick and others began promoting the idea that systems failures, and not individual “bad apples,” lead to poor quality in health care. Dr. Thomas Lee, Chief Medical Officer at Press Ganey, argues that clinician burnout is also a systems issue, caused by the complexity of health care and not a failure of health care workers to be resilient. At a recent meeting of the IHI Leadership Alliance, Lee shared a framework for thinking about burnout and recommended resources to help health care leaders improve employee joy in work. “We need more than zero burnout,” Lee said. “We need intrinsically motivated people at every level of the organization.”

Building Systems of Safety:
WIHI, November 3

Is health care actually safer than it was a decade ago? Not necessarily. Two experienced patient safety experts and improvers join the next WIHI (Thursday, November 3, 2-3pm ET) to discuss sources of concern. For example, overall rates of harm in the US remain high despite many safety improvement efforts; there’s a misconception that the sum total of multiple improvement projects achieves organization-wide safety; and increasing preoccupation with meeting certain targets has shifted focus away from communication and handoff failures, two major contributors to patient harm. So, what’s the alternative? Our guests will talk about systems of safety, culture change, reliability, and a continuous learning system.

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IHI Focus Area Spotlight

Improvement Capability: Learning about Variation by Counting Candy

Person- and Family-Centered Care: 9 Questions Your Doctor Wishes You’d Ask

Patient Safety: Learning from Patient Safety Incidents

Quality, Cost, and Value: 5 Steps for Creating Value Through Process Mapping and Observation

Triple Aim for Populations: Triple Aim in Canada

Look for

New Online First articles in JAMA Internal Medicine: “The Quality of Outpatient Care Delivered to Adults in the United States, 2002 to 2013” — and the related commentary “The Quest to Improve Quality” co-authored by Beth McGlynn, Chair of IHI's Scientific Advisory Group.


A recent installment of “Dear IHI” gives some tips for talking about implicit bias without making people defensive.

In a short video clip, IHI's Derek Feeley, Pedro Delgado, and Bob Lloyd share their thoughts on a recent visit to IHI Strategic Partner East London NHS Foundation Trust, having met with service users and staff to learn how QI is being embedded throughout the Trust.


Applications are being accepted for the 2017-2018 Disparities Leadership Program, focused on helping health care leaders achieve equity in quality, offered through the Disparities Solution Center (letters of intent due November 18).

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Leading Population Health Transformation
February 22–24 in San Diego, CA
Where's IHI?
IHI’s Derek Feeley, Trissa Torres, Dave Williams, and other staff are visiting Kaiser Permanente (KP) in California for the annual IHI/KP Strategic Partnership meeting.

Several IHI staff are traveling to Mexico to present at the October 26-28 Latin American Forum on Quality and Safety in Healthcare.
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