The American Society of Professionals in Patient Safety (ASPPS) is a membership program for professionals
and others interested in patient safety. This is part of a series of member profiles.
by Joanna Carmona
Chenel Trevellini, MSN, RN, CWOCN, WOC nurse specialist, nurse educator, St. Francis Hospital
Why did you join the ASPPS?
“ASPPS helps me to approach my work in a more meaningful way. I often feel like a lone ranger in my field because there’s not that many of us, but the verbiage that is consistent with ASPPS gets the attention of the stakeholders, helps me to be able to tell my story better and to obtain resources for my department. The focus on patient safety and caregiver safety makes me realize what a great organization NPSF is. I felt as though this was an organization I had to be involved with because it is impacting patient safety on a global level.”
What does patient safety mean to you?
“It means having the correct systems and processes in place that make delivering care easy and safe on a regular basis. Care should be just as safe at 8:00 am on a Monday as it is on a Saturday at 2:00 am. I believe that having correct systems in place facilitate great care.”
What keeps you up at night?
“What keeps me up at night is that we have sicker and sicker patients in the hospital and coming up with the correct ways to meet all of their needs is difficult. I often wonder whether or not we can keep up with advances in technology. We can keep patients alive for longer than we ever have before, but that puts them at risk for all kinds of infections and other issues. It bothers me that we have advanced so far in medicine with extending how long we live, but we haven’t been able to ward off all of the secondary issues that are associated with it.”
In your opinion, what is the future of patient safety?
“The patient safety field needs to continue growing by really reaching out to different disciplines to join the organization, raising awareness of patient safety organizations, and getting more people on board so they aren’t operating in silos. Every specialist has something to do with patient safety. I feel very hopeful and renewed to understand that there’s this much work going on in improvement of patient safety. We are getting there.
I want to be in a place where doctors and other providers can talk to families about realistic expectations as far as their care. When you have crucial conversations with the families, families often open up. We don’t always see that in our health care colleagues, but I think patients and families would like to know the true prognosis because that would help with their decisions. For example, when someone asks me what I feel about the prognosis, I try to be open and compassionate, but I don’t mislead them. I think people appreciate that”
What’s something most people don’t know about you?
“I make puppets! I use items that people have thrown away to make gigantic puppets used in the plays that my husband writes.”
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Joanna Carmona is communications coordinator at the National Patient Safety Foundation. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.