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Walk This Way: Patient Safety Symposium

  • June 13, 2014
  • |
  • Colonnade Hotel, Boston

Culture affects safety. You affect culture.

These presentations are now available for download.

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Listen to excerpts from the speakers during the symposium.

Click the arrows on the bottom right to enlarge this video.

Gerald Hickson, MD
pdfSVP for Quality, Patient Safety and Risk Prevention
Vanderbilt University Medical Center
Asaf Bitton, MD, MPH
pdfBrigham and Women's Hospital
HMS Center for Primary Care
Mark E. Reynolds
Dana Siegal, RN, CPHRM
pdfDirector of Patient Safety, CRICO Strategies
Tracy Granzyk
pdfDirector, Patient Safety and Quality Innovation
MedStar Health

Paul McTague, JD
Martin, Magnuson, McCarthy & Kenney
Richard H.L. Corder, FACHE, MHA
pdfAssistant Vice President, CRICO Strategies
Laura J. Wood, DNP, MS, RN
pdfSVP Patient Care Services & Chief Nursing Officer
Boston Children’s Hospital



Attendees learned how their work environment impacts patient safety and the risk of malpractice allegations. They explored the route to a health care practice culture that supports risk identification, encourages everyone to participate in reducing errors, and rewards innovative patient safety practices. Attendees specific situations  and concerns were incorporated into the presentations and discussion that helped:

  • Describe the cultural components of a health care practice environment,
  • List the patient safety risks associated with a sub-optimal safety culture,
  • Define the strengths and limitations of safety culture assessment,
  • Identify best practices for identifying goals for changing the culture in your practice setting, and
  • Indicate best practices for implementing culture changes.

“Smoking Stories”

We looked back in amazement to a time when physicians, nurses, and patients openly smoked cigarettes in hospitals and other health care settings. We explored how attitudes, policies, and behaviors—that is, the workplace culture— related to smoking changed over time. Then we asked our Walk This Way attendees to place themselves 10 years in the future, and make a prediction about changes related to patient safety in their workplace that would make them look back in amazement. The following is sample of the view from 2024.

It’s hard to believe that back in 2014 we:

  • Worried that all clinicians were not reporting adverse events or near misses or good catches
  • Took over a year to build a patient portal while arguing about  what to “allow’ patients to see
  • Took care of our patents in the hospital and office
  • Shouted at colleagues while treating patients when something went wrong
  • Sequestered doctors and nurses from other health care workers
  • Kept adverse events a secret from staff
  • Expected patients to make their own appointments for consults, follow-up
  • Blamed people working in bad systems versus looking at the process and making that better

It’s hard to believe that back in 2014 we didn’t:

  • Allow patients full access to all parts of their medical record so that they can truly partner with us in their care
  • Always wash our hands when seeing patients
  • Feel comfortable stopping the line when something doesn’t seem right
  • Fully sanitize mobile devices that continually contaminate
  • Have a standardized handoff process
  • Have efficient systems for formally tracking/following up on abnormal test results
  • Respond effectively to every instance of disrespectful behavior
  • Round on patients as an interdisciplinary team


QUESTIONS? We will be happy to answer your questions about this event. I have a Walk this Way question