University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, Geriatric Scholar.
It’s been about 7 months since I left Turf Valley and all the amazing people at the Patient Safety Conference. Not many days have passed that I haven’t thought about my experience, the lessons we learned together or about the larger issue of quality and safety. You really would be hard pressed to go through a day of medical training without encountering something we could make better, safer or be more transparent about. Sadly it’s still a topic that struggles to find its way into our medical curriculums. The week of shared passion in Turf Valley around safe quality care is something I will always carry with me, but I only wish it was a passion I could spread more easily. We have a long way to go before the curriculums everywhere are turned on their heads to reflect the flat hierarchies, transparent communication and error reporting that we… Continue reading
“I look at you and you give me trust again because you have chosen to be here. My loss is your gift.”
Words can be powerful when the meaning behind them is so strong. The words spoken today by David Skolnik will be with me always now. Seeing the powerful story of their child Michael illustrated and hearing he and his wife Patti speak with us today was a stark reminder of the humanity behind medical errors. The courage it must take to relive and retell that story so many times is amazing, but what we were able to learn was also an amazing gift. The fact that David puts his trust back in us – members of the profession that caused his son’s death – was an awe inspiring moment that I will not soon forget. I think his words will live on as a… Continue reading
The Joint Commission identified communication as one of the root causes in over 60% of reported sentinel events in 2013 (2004-2013) and another study found communication to be one of the top two contributing factors in analysis of over 70 medical mishaps. Clearly even without considering healthcare we often misunderstand one another, and when someone’s care is on the line its not something we can leave to chance. I spent my summer working on a Acute Care for the Elderly (ACE) unit looking specifically at various measures of safety and quality. Besides significantly lowering readmission, reducing average length of stay, and allowing the unit to go over 150 days before their first fall (and they have only had 3 in 10 months), the unit also showed increased satisfaction among all staff compared to the rest of the hospital, and a perception of better communication between physicians and nurses. Most of… Continue reading
Just having completed my first year of medical school my clinical experiences are limited, but my exposure to the world of healthcare is not. Having spent the 4 years of my undergraduate career working with the geriatric population I had great exposure. The sales team at the assisted living facility I worked at frequented the high spots on their tours with nervous families – the courtyard, the dining and activities rooms, the bar and fancy lobby – and just as often spouted out words of assurance to families about the services their family member would “receive”. Perhaps this informal and false reassurance was not legally wrong, but over time I came to know that regardless of legality the promises the salesmen/women recited held little truth. The deals were not transparent, and at a time when families desperately needed that kind of honesty.
These sales pitches flashed through my mind the… Continue reading