Monthly Archives: September 2011

Welcome to the Blog: Putting Patients Back in Patient Safety


Welcome to the Wilson-Stronks blog. I hope to use this tool to share information that is of interest to those who envision a more equitable and patient-centered health care system. I have titled this blog, “Putting Patients Back in Patient Safety” because I firmly believe that our many patient safety systems have neglected to consider the complex backgrounds, characteristics, and needs of patients who are served by our health system. By “Putting Patients Back in Patient Safety” we can help to promote effective safety strategies in a manner that is inclusive of and sensitive to patients from diverse backgrounds.

I am happy to share a link to a story recently published in the periodical Hospitals, and Health Networks titled, “Does Your Patient Really Understand?”
This piece is one of several in this month’s issue of H&HN that directly discusses issues related to culturally sensitive patient-centered care. One of the other pieces is an interview with Peter Pronovost, MD about his work to reduce preventable harm. I was thrilled that he mentioned health disparities and patient-centered care as important components of this work.

My pleasure at the mention of health disparities, health literacy, effective communication, and patient-centered care by a publication much read by hospital administrators is tempered by disappointment at the lack of attention to health disparities, health literacy, effective communication, and patient-centered care at a recent conference attended by healthcare quality professionals. We must do a better job to integrate our efforts to promote health equity into our efforts to improve overall quality and safety. I call to my colleagues who are working to eliminate health disparities to get the word out to the “mainstream” quality professionals. There is great work being done to evaluate the effectiveness of interventions and systems to support equitable care, but I would like to see more disparities work highlighted at our quality conferences. On that note, I think I have an abstract to develop.

Health to all!