March 8-14, 2020 is National Patient Safety Awareness Week.

The University of Vermont Medical Center is committed to the safety of our patients and families. We have a qualified team of experts who focus on reducing risks and promoting patient safety programs across  our organization.

Some of our patient safety programs are:

  • Creating a positive safety culture that encourages reporting of errors, near misses or otherpatient safety concerns.
  • Developing and disseminating best practices in patient safety to ensure a uniform approach across all our patient care teams.
  • Deploying risk assessment strategies, such as patient safety surveillance rounds, to identify processes with latent error potential and correct them before patients are impacted.
  • Working with staff and clinicians to develop strategies to implement safe patient care processes through the development and use of protocols, checklists, standardization, and automation, where possible.
  • Using electronic tools for pro-active data and trend analysis to identify areas of risk in order to focus improvement efforts.
  • Providing oversight and expertise for implementation of state and national patient safety initiatives.
  • Facilitating comprehensive system review and improvement using various techniques, including root cause analysis.
  • Ensuring compliance with state and national patient safety regulatory requirements and recommendations.

This year, as we recognize Patient Safety Awareness Week, our Patient Safety team would like to remind you to:

  • Wash your hands thoroughly using soap and warm water, or use hand sanitizer
  • Remind your doctor or nurse to wash their hands if they forget
  • Bring all your medications with you to your doctor’s appointments
  •  Always take your medications as prescribed
  •  Speak up! If you have questions or concerns, be sure to ask your provider to explain. It’s your right to understand your medications and treatment plans.

Together, we can partner to make patient care as safe as possible and keep our communities safe and healthy.

Lori Notowitz is Director of Patient Safety at the University of Vermont Medical Center.

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