“It’s incumbent upon all of us to be able to address safety issues to ensure that all our patients are in the safest environment when they’re receiving care,” states Surgeon General Dr. Richard Carmona. IntelliCentrics is in full agreement. In fact, we believe that quality care is dependent on a safe and secure environment. In order to raise awareness about the importance of solving patient safety issues and to educate the public on the steps they can take to decrease risks, we joined forces with Mediaplanet and USA Today in a Patient Safety campaign. The Patient Safety print supplement was distributed through the weekend edition of USA Today on February 27, 2015 and is also published online.
As part of the campaign, IntelliCentrics CEO Mike Sheehan was interviewed as one of three healthcare industry experts looking to lower the number of preventable hospital errors. His answers for the article, Patient Safety: What’s Going Wrong?, are below:
Why is patient safety an important initiative? “In the broadest and truest sense, patient safety is dependent upon a safe environment and is a central component of providing care and wellness for all patients. Patient safety is frequently discussed and represented as a metric with lots of attention on preventable causes. What I consider to be most interesting is that each and every individual who enters a health care facility plays an equally important role in patient safety. Therefore, patient safety is not the sole responsibility of the facility or the medial staff, but rather each and every one of us.”
In your opinion, what is the most important aspect of patient safety?“We all have a common enemy and it is infection. The answer is to enable medical staff, general staff, volunteers, industry representatives and patient visitors to work together in an integrated and organized manner to improve patient safety. Each group plays a unique and different role. Just like any team environment, each of us must do our part and the sum of the parts can become greater as a whole.”
How is technology changing patient safety?“Health care environments are some of the most complex operational environments known. They are open 24/7 with countless numbers of people coming and going, all with different purposes for being there. Technology is changing patient safety by moving from the ability to report on events to the ability to prevent negative outcomes. This is the most exciting concept which will benefit all of society.”
What do you think is in the near future for patient safety? “Quality patient care is dependent upon a safe and secure environment. That is why we believe that the near future of patient safety will recognize that there are two essential components to quality patient care. The first is the care itself and how it can be obtained and delivered by medical staff and health care facilities. The second is the growing recognition that the environment itself plays a very important role to quality care. The environment is major and critical component to enabling the medical staff to perform at their very best.”