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A Bold Move and a Call to Action

Posted By Administration, Monday, March 13, 2017
Updated: Friday, March 10, 2017

NPSF and the Institute for Healthcare Improvement are joining forces
in an effort to accelerate progress in patient safety.

By Tejal K. Gandhi, MD, MPH, CPPS


Tejal K. Gandhi

As many of you know, today marks the first business day of Patient Safety Awareness Week. This important week is a highlight of our United for Patient Safety Campaign and serves as dedicated time for raising awareness about patient safety among health professionals and the public.

With this in mind, today seems especially fitting to share the exciting news that NPSF and the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI), are joining forces in an effort to accelerate progress in patient safety. The merger of our two organizations, which will be effective May 1, reflects a shared belief that patient safety is a public health issue and in need of a fresh and more robust approach. This bold move also reflects a strong commitment on the part of both organizations to making patient and workforce safety a core value in our health care institutions.

NPSF is also pleased to announce that IHI is among more than two dozen organizations that have endorsed the NPSF Call to Action: Preventable Health Care Harm Is a Public Health Crisis and Patient Safety Requires a Coordinated Public Health Response, which released on our website today.


As we know, there is ample evidence to suggest that preventable harm in health care is a leading cause of death in the United States. In the Call to Action, NPSF calls on health care leaders and policymakers to initiate a coordinated public health response to improve patient safety and drive the collective work needed to ensure that patients and those who care for them are free from preventable harm.

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Building on successful efforts to reduce health care associated infections and taking advantage of critical lessons learned, the Call to Action provides a new public health framework to guide collective efforts. The six-part framework, which was developed with significant insight and perspectives from the NPSF Board of Advisors and Board of Directors as well as senior officials at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, identifies effective, replicable interventions that can be implemented across the health care system. It begins with defining the problem and setting national goals and involves improving coordination of activities across sectors and stakeholders.

In our current political climate, leadership at the federal level may be uncertain. But that doesn’t mean others cannot or should not take on a roll in playing a part. As a first step, organizations can demonstrate their commitment to advancing patient safety by supporting the Call to Action.


We at NPSF look forward to working more closely with IHI as well as our many other endorsers to advance the components of the Call to Action in the coming year. I hope you will review our framework, share it with your peers, and get involved with us in creating solutions.

Do you believe patient safety is a public health issue? Comment on this post below. Note: To comment, you must first register on the website. If you are already registered, you must log in to comment.

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Tejal K. Gandhi, MD, MPH, CPPS, is president and chief executive officer of the National Patient Safety Foundation and of the NPSF Lucian Leape Institute.

Tags:  IHI  public health 

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