Every year on July 20th, Joe Thielemann volunteers at Northside Hospital in honor of his late father,…
Celebrating Patient Safety Awareness Week
As Risk Management professionals, we are dedicated to raising awareness about patient safety among health care professionals, which is why NORCAL Mutual is excited to celebrate Patient Safety Awareness Week. Patient Safety Awareness Week is widely recognized to highlight the important role both health care professionals and consumers play in promoting safety in patient care.
NORCAL Mutual strongly promotes and supports a culture of patient safety and quality patient care by providing our physicians with tools to improve patient safety and decrease risk of a claim. The problem many of our physicians face is that consumers often lack the necessary health literacy to take an active role in their health care. What this means is that patients are not typically fully informed of potential risks or side effects that come with procedures and treatment. The question we have to ask is why aren’t patients taking a more active role in their healthcare?
We have all played the role of a patient and likely put trust in our physician to recommend what is best for our health without asking questions. Patient Safety Awareness Week serves as an important reminder for physicians to lead by example and help health care consumers become an active voice in their own care. The National Patient Safety Foundation recognizes the need to empower patients to speak up so they developed a program aimed at improving health literacy called askme3. The educational program was designed to help patients become more active members of their health care team, and help improve communications between patients, families and health care professionals. The idea is that health care consumers should ask the following three questions of their physicians to better understand their health conditions and what they need to do to stay healthy:
- What is my main problem?
- What do I need to do?
- Why is it important for me to do this?
The National Patient Safety Foundation is also circulating a Health Care Professional Pledge. Over 2,000 health care professionals have already pledged their support. Take some time to read the pledge below and consider pledging your support.
Health Care Professional Pledge
I pledge to strive to implement and follow practices that increase the safety of my patients and my team.
Do you want to learn more about Patient Safety Awareness? View the full fact sheet for additional details on the National Patient Safety Foundation site.
Virginia (Ginger) Kelley, MHA, CMPE, FASHRM, CPHRM, ARM
Southeast Regional Manager, Risk Management