Patient Safety Weekly Must Reads (Aug 26, 2016)

We’re bringing back a weekly review of the trending topics in patient safety from PPAHS and around the world. In this week, we highlight 2 guest contributors to PPAHS, the latest in opioid monitoring technology, and developments to the culture of patient safety.


5 Key Learnings to Create a Culture of Patient Safety with Capnography

We interviewed Peggy Lange, RT (Director, Respiratory Care Department, St. Cloud Hospital) about a project that examined acute response team (ART) calls regarding patients who had received procedural or conscious sedation 24 hours prior to the event.  The result is one of our most popular interviews to date (77K+ views and growing!), with 5 key learnings highlighted on the use of capnography in a multi-disciplinary team.

To read the full transcript instead, click here.

Why All Medical Schools Must Incorporate Quality Improvement and Patient Safety Into Their Curriculums

We’re proud to feature a special guest post by Molly Siegel, a medical student at the Boston University School of Medicine.  Molly’s article that makes an impassioned case for patient safety as a foundational teaching that starts in medical school and continues from there. It’s an increasingly topical subject, as the focus on hospital-acquired conditions by governmental institutions such as Medicare continues.  Read the full article here (, and reach out to Ms. Siegel on Twitter at @siegel_molly.

Interested in contributing your thoughts to #PatientSafety? Let us know in the comments or send us a DM at @MikePPAHS.

From around the world:

Opioids in Patient Safety

The Boston Herald reported that UMass Medical School researchers are testing a wearable, swallowable device that could help clinicians learn about how opioid addiction happens and guide prescription decision making. This follows a growing trend for continuous electronic monitoring across the spectrum of psychologic parameters for wireless and wearable (or, in this case, ingestible!) technology.

Preliminary results from a PPAHS survey of nurses found that nurses would like patient monitoring technology that is wearable and wireless. A full report on this survey is being prepared. If you would like to receive a copy, please contact us.

To read the full article, click here.

Culture & Patient Safety reported on a new study from the University of Hong Kong identifying a culture of “speaking up” regarding medical errors and their causes as a critical behaviour of patient safety in hospitals. This new study comes hot on the heels of a study published in June estimating that more than 250,000 could be attributed to medical error in the US alone (read our thoughts on the issue).  For the full article, click here.

In typical Harvard Business Review style, a recent article published on breaks down advances in patient mortality reduction into 3 macro trends: technical advancements, standardizing procedures, and high reliability organizing. The authors make a fascinating case for how the next large advances in patient safety will hinge on organizational behaviour in the clinical setting: shifting cultural and leadership models to better enable teams to identify patients in distress and ‘rescue’. Read the full article here.

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