Patient Safety the focus of National Awareness Week

    "Nobody gets up and goes to work in the morning wanting to hurt anybody."
    Phil Hassen, CEO, Canadian Patient Safety Institute

    EDMONTON, Oct. 3 /CNW/ - Encouraging each Canadian to take responsibility
for their own healthcare by taking charge and being involved is the focus of
the Canadian Patient Safety Institute's (CPSI) third annual Canadian Patient
Safety Week.
    Set to take place during the week of October 8 - 13, the national
campaign will see hundreds of healthcare organizations and frontline
professionals across the country promote the role of good communication in
healthcare through the theme: Patient Safety: Be Involved. Ask. Talk. Listen.
    CPSI CEO Phil Hassen says: "The appeal of the week is universal...
patient safety speaks to values and can be owned by anyone - from an
individual, a family member, a frontline health care worker or middle manager,
to influencers at the executive table."
    "Patient safety is critically important and can only be addressed by
individuals, health care providers and all levels of government working
together," says the Honourable Tony Clement, Federal Minister of Health. "We
each have a significant role to play in ensuring that our health care system
works effectively and safely for us."
    This event is the only designated Canadian week of its kind. Its central
objective is to put patient safety on the country's radar screen and support
local patient safety efforts already underway. To that end, during the week, a
focus will be on sharing what safety advancements are happening within
communities and in hospitals across the country with the Canadian public.
    "Patient safety is evolving rapidly and it's fast becoming a priority in
our healthcare system," explains Hassen. "We're witnessing a move from a focus
on budgets and quantity, to quality."
    Evidence shows more Canadian patients die annually following an adverse
event in hospital than the number of deaths attributed to breast cancer, motor
vehicle accidents and HIV combined. These events are often the result of a
system error as opposed to the mistake of one individual.
    As a national leader dedicated to building and advancing a safer health
system, CPSI acknowledges that the underlying causes of adverse events are
complex, interrelated, and beyond an individual practitioner or, on occasion,
an organization to solve. The answer to making healthcare safe for patients
lies in collectively seeking out systems-oriented solutions to address
underlying causes.
    "Improving care requires the effort of health care disciplines,
administrators, governments, and patients, working as a team," adds Hassen.
"We know that following good communication practice - between patients and
their respective families and all healthcare and front-line professionals - is
a key step in helping to reduce/eradicate errors in the healthcare delivery
    To assist healthcare professionals and front-line workers in making the
week successful in their local area or organization, CPSI populated its 2007
Canadian Patient Safety Week website, with tools
and resources. The website was designed in collaboration with health
professionals throughout Canada to advance the patient safety message locally.
A list of events, organized by province, is also posted on-line for media.


    Canadian Patient Safety Institute

    The Canadian Patient Safety Institute (CPSI) was established in 2003 as
an independent not-for-profit corporation, operating collaboratively with
health professionals and organizations, regulatory bodies and governments to
build and advance a safer healthcare system for Canadians.
    CPSI performs a coordinating and leadership role across health sectors
and systems, promotes leading practices and raises awareness about patient
safety by working in collaboration with partners, patients, their families and
the general public.
    CPSI is a national leader in building and advancing a safer health system
for Canadians.

    Canadian Patient Safety Week

    If Canada's record on patient safety is to improve, the culture
surrounding adverse events and critical incidents will have to change from
shame and blame to a model where experiences and the lesions learned are
broadly shared.

    -   Canadian Patient Safety Week is an annual event to keep the issue of
        patient safety foremost in Canada.

    -   It is designed to raise awareness and increase dialogue about patient
        safety issues, related programs and projects happening across Canada.

    -   The Canadian Patient Safety Institute launched Canadian Patient
        Safety Week for the first time in 2005.

    -   This designated week is a part of its national mandate to build and
        advance a safer healthcare system.

    -   It is used to increase public and organizational participation in
        efforts to improve patient safety in hospitals, continuing care and
        long-term care centres, in pharmacies and across the entire
        healthcare delivery spectrum.

For further information:

For further information: Trish Filevich, CPSI Communications, (780)

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