​Today I want to begin to briefly outline one important goal that we will share over the next 10 years.  UHN will to become a High Reliability Organization (HRO), a term that you are going to hear increasingly throughout the organization in the coming months. What this means is that we share a commitment and a goal to reduce preventable patient harm to zero. This has been already accomplished in many industries – aviation and nuclear power for example. Increasingly, high performing health care organizations like UHN are working to become HROs through a series of changes that include a relentless focus on quality, safety, and elimination of hospital acquired conditions that are preventable.

Quality and safety must become every person's focus and responsibility. It means that when we see a situation that might be harmful to a patient or employee, anyone can call it without fear and that we work together to eliminate the risk.

From what I have learned and seen so far at UHN, we're starting from a great place!  We already have a strong foundation that includes:

  • UHN Board of Trustees focus on Quality and Safety
  • Senior Management Team consistent engagement around quality and safety
  • Established Quality committees and teams that focus on safety
  • An incident management system that has been in place for some time now which means that we have data over a number of years.
  • The encouragement of all staff to report incidents
  • Review at the most senior level of all severe and critical incidents
  • A Patient Relations group which has a wealth of data about incidents in the organization
  • An emphasis on inter-professional teams
  • Transparency as an underlying tenet
  • Our Lean work that is grounded in a focus in the patient

Over the coming months, you will be hearing more about our plans to build on this strong foundation to become a High Reliability Organization.​ Over time, this will involve all of us at UHN and the beneficiaries of this will be the patients that we serve together through our clinical, research, and educational mission.


Peter​

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