The Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI)-convened National Steering Committee for Patient Safety (NSC) has released a National Action Plan intended to provide US health systems with renewed momentum and clearer direction for eliminating preventable medical harm.
Safer Together: A National Action Plan to Advance Patient Safety draws from evidence-based practices, widely known and effective interventions, exemplar case examples and newer innovations. The plan is the work of 27 influential federal agencies, safety organisations and experts, and patient and family advocates.
The plan provides clear direction that health care leaders, delivery organisations, and associations can use to make significant advances toward safer care and reduced harm across the continuum of care.
The National Action Plan centres on four foundational and interdependent areas, prioritised as essential to create total systems safety, with 17 recommendations to advance patient safety.
Culture, Leadership, and Governance
1. Ensure safety is a demonstrated core value.
2. Assess capabilities and commit resources to advance safety.
3. Widely share information about safety to promote transparency.
4. Implement competency-based governance and leadership.
Patient and family engagement
5. Establish competencies for all healthcare professionals for the engagement of patients, families, and care partners.
6. Engage patients, families, and care partners in the co-production of care.
7. Include patients, families, and care partners in leadership, governance, and safety and improvement efforts.
8. Ensure equitable engagement for all patients, families, and care partners.
9. Promote a culture of trust and respect for patients, families, and care partners.
10. Implement a systems approach to workforce safety.
11. Assume accountability for physical and psychological safety and a healthy work environment that fosters the joy of the health care workforce.
12. Develop, resource, and execute on priority programmes that equitably foster workforce safety.
13. Facilitate both intra- and inter-organisational learning.
14. Accelerate the development of the best possible safety learning networks.
15. Initiate and develop systems to facilitate interprofessional education and training on safety.
16. Develop shared goals for safety across the continuum of care.
17. Expedite industry-wide coordination, collaboration, and cooperation on safety.