WIHI: No Let Up on Safety


Date: September 19, 2019


  • Tejal K. Gandhi, MD, MPH, CPPS, Chief Clinical and Safety Officer, Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI)​
  • Jay Bhatt, DO, MPH, MPA, FACP, Senior Vice President & Chief Medical Officer of the American Hospital Association and President of Health Research and Educational Trust (HRET)
  • Helen Haskell, President, Mothers Against Medical Error and Consumers Advancing Patient Safety
  • Rear Admiral Jeffery Brady, MD, MPH, Director, Center for Quality Improvement and Patient Safety, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality

It’s been 20 years since the renamed National Academy of Medicine (formerly Institute of Medicine) first shined light on the unintended consequences of medical errors in American health care. Their report, To Err Is Human: Building a Safer Health System, has served as a catalyst for safety initiatives in health systems, and progress has been made on multiple fronts — from significant reductions in healthcare-associated infections, to an embrace of quality improvement and patient safety solutions that now encompass the entire continuum of care.

Even with this progress, obstacles to safe and reliable care persist. Health systems are confronting a new payment environment, it remains difficult to sustain improvement gains, there are EHR headaches, and there exist ongoing concerns about physician and staff burnout.

These are just some of the reasons IHI convened national safety leaders and stakeholders to form the National Steering Committee for Patient Safety (NSC). Co-chaired by IHI and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), the NSC is hard at work on a new National Action Plan it expects to release in early 2020.

In light of these developments, and in support of World Patient Safety Day, this WIHI focuses on the work of the NSC and their bold intention to re-energize the safety movement in the US with foundational safety principles and priorities.


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