UPMC Joins Patient Safety Movement, Commits to Eliminating Patient Harm

By: Jamie Loveland


In partnership with the Patient Safety Movement Coalition, UPMC and 1,700 hospitals worldwide have made a public and formal commitment to saving lives and promoting a culture of safety by achieving zero preventable deaths by the year 2020.

This commitment was made in support of the Partnership for Patients, an initiative established by the Affordable Care Act (ACA) in 2010 to save lives by averting hospital acquired conditions (HAC) and reducing hospital readmissions.

Last week, Paul Phrampus, M.D., medical director for patient safety at UPMC; Todd Pollock, director of quality at UPMC Presbyterian-Shadyside; and Joe Kiani, founder of the Patient Safety Movement Coalition, held a meeting to discuss the vital role UPMC and clinicians in Pittsburgh are playing in improving patient safety. They met at the Peter M. Winter Institute for Simulation, Education, and Research, which is designed as a hospital setting outfitted with realistic patient simulators, allowing UPMC clinicians to practice and improve their skills.

“Identifying and rectifying situations that may potentially bring harm to a patient requires vigilance, attention to detail, and a culture of safety and transparency,” said Dr. Phrampus. “We strive to empower all staff to make our facilities the safest they can be by speaking up so we can correct these situations.”

This culture of safety, combined with UPMC’s focus on education, training, and competency assessment, is helping to develop solutions and best practices to decrease errors and improve patient safety. Visit the Patient Safety Movement website for a full list of solutions being implemented worldwide to reduce errors and save lives.

“You cannot improve something that you don’t talk about or understand,” Kiani said. “Transparency and reporting of data is key. By investing in understanding the root cause of these errors, UPMC is helping clinicians nationwide make improvements.”

To read more about UPMC and the Patient Safety Movement Coalition’s partnership, as well as the steps being made to reduce patient harm, click here.