Annie Hunningher highlights the difficulties in measuring an organisation's safety culture and the lack of validated measurement tools available.
Measurement of safety culture – a necessary suite in any Trust's safety measures? Well it seems not! This quick Twitter poll, along with observations from a number of large trusts and discussions at webinars, indicate that culture is not a measure many Trusts have got a handle on.
The Patient Safety Incident Response Framework (PSIRF) implementation recommends in the pre-framework preparation that we are meant to be doing culture measurement for this important piece of work to land.
With a range of tools around, it’s difficult to know how best to measure this sadly often pervasive and complex metric. There is MapSaF, Safety attitudes, Safety climate and Psychological safety measures. A useful booklet from The Health Foundation, 'Measuring Safety Culture', gives an overview of them all. The booklet also says that Trusts that are measuring culture are usually higher performing.
There are a number of companies that provide fee paying links to administer it for you, but without resource it’s unlikely to be widely delivered. Some Trusts take a few of their staff survey questions to guide them rather than send out another survey to all their staff, but there are questions of validity around this practice. We also need to be able to break down results into areas, specialties and sites to measure for improvement.
A validated tool to measure safety culture across organisations along with a platform to administer it is yet to become clear and we need a national solution to make its measurement standardised and possible.
I'd love to hear if and how you are measuring safety culture and what tools you are using. Add your comments below.