A unique partnership with the best providers to reduce harm and support patients and families
We hear a lot from patients and families about some of the worst things that happen in hospitals. And we know first‐hand the devastating impact of hospital errors. But our own experience, and those of countless others, has also made us acutely aware of the exceptional care and life‐enhancing accomplishments that many hospitals deliver every day. Some are on the front lines in combating the epidemic of harm that is recognized as the third leading cause of death in the United States and Canada.
Beyond the human and emotional carnage it creates, what makes medical errors so troubling is that most of them are preventable. Healthcare providers have the ability to reduce most them, yet so many have failed to do so. As Sir Liam Donaldson, M.D., one of the world’s most respected voices for patient safety, candidly observed, “Too many healthcare organisations espouse the goal of safer care while regarding harm as the cost of doing business.”
A new paradigm for patient‐ and family‐led engagement
The Center for Patient Protection works with the best providers in building what we call The New Paradigm for Patient‐ and Family Led EngagementSM. It is a vision that sees providers making patients and families first in everything they do. They are unswerving in following best practices for patient safety and family engagement. They recognize the vital role that patients and families play in the delivery of care and in shaping a positive hospital experience. They provide patients and families with the tools they need to make informed decisions and ensure that policies, practices and protocols are in place that serve that purpose. They view families as full partners in the patient’s care and not as “visitors” or inconveniences. They always listen. They know that when a loved one is receiving care, the family is, in effect, also hospitalized and that they have a duty to protect the health and well‐being of caregiving family members.
The best providers are attentive to the signs of family burn‐out and stress, and use their expressions of concern, and complaints, as constructive early‐warning indicators that help to avoid disaster and the unintended infliction of emotional harm. They understand both the physical and psychological impact of the hospital experience on patients and families. They embed respect in every aspect of care. They are forthright and compassionate if harm occurs. They are committed to the belief that, far from indicating weakness or failure on the part of providers or healthcare professionals in the face of adverse experiences, an apology is a demonstration of both the willingness to learn from unintended consequences and the obligation on the part of true caregivers to help heal the emotional harm that can arise. The best healthcare providers are driven by a deep core of ethical values. Integrity, openness, kindness and fairness are the touchstones for all their interactions with patients and families.
A new paradigm for patient‐ and family‐led engagement is necessary to fully bring hospital practices into line with 21st century patient and family realities.
In short, the best providers lead in patient and family engagement. We believe a new paradigm for patient and family engagement is necessary to fully bring hospital practices into line with 21st century patient and family realities. We are committed to helping them reach that goal.
Leading for change
We also believe the best institutions need to speak up with a stronger voice in supporting these principles and in urging their healthcare colleagues everywhere to do the same. To help champion these efforts, The Center for Patient Protection works at every level of hospital interaction with patients and families to bring about positive outcomes for the safety of patients and the success of the family experience. Our perspective is informed and guided by the voices of the patients and families who have suffered harm, and by their universal expectation that their experiences will be used to improve the healthcare system in a way that makes it safer and more compassionate for everyone.
We think patients, families and policy makers will reward the healthcare players who are prepared to raise the bar for patient and family engagement, thereby reducing the risk of harm in all its forms.
Ensuring better outcomes for both patients and families
By working with patients and families every day, The Center for Patient Protection has been able to capture their unique experiences into teachable lessons that can help every provider achieve the goals of combating medical errors, cutting healthcare costs and litigation risks and reducing the emotional harm faced by patients and families. We have developed these lessons into a number of tools and timely, game‐changing initiatives, like our Patient and Family Bedside MedkitSM, our Patient and Family Engagement Trigger ToolSM and our Guidelines for Safer DNR for patients, families and clinicians, which are now available for the hospital setting.
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The videos at the side provide a helpful overview of the need for greater patient safety in the hospital setting, the consequences when things go wrong, and the value of an apology as part of the healing process.
Noteworthy Patient Safety Videos for Providers