Features  |   May 2016
Time for a Patient Safety Officer
Author Affiliations
  • Keith J. Ruskin, M.D.
    Committee on Patient Safety and Education
  • Harish Ramakrishna, M.D., FASE, FACC
    Committee on Patient Safety and Education
  • Brett L. Arron, M.D.
    Committee on Patient Safety and Education
Article Information
Patient Safety / Features
Features   |   May 2016
Time for a Patient Safety Officer
ASA Monitor 05 2016, Vol.80, 20-21.
ASA Monitor 05 2016, Vol.80, 20-21.
Every industry has taken steps to improve employee safety by decreasing the possibility of industrial accidents and individual injuries. Mass transportation and health care are significantly different from other business sectors (e.g., manufacturing) and share several common features. For example, a factory might be concerned about maintaining the safety of individual employees and guests. In contrast, the transportation industry is concerned about the safety of employees and passengers, and also that of bystanders who happen to be in the path of an accident. Health care is particularly susceptible to lapses in safety because there are multiple single points of failure, many health care professionals have not had exposure to safety training, and each patient has a unique combination of surgical problems and comorbidities. In addition to human error, normalization of deviance and risky behavior substantially increase the risk of a medical mishap.
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