#ConquerSilence during Canadian Patient Safety Week (October 28 – November 1)
At some point, every one of us will be a patient in the healthcare system. What most Canadians don’t realize, is that 28,000 of us die from preventable harm when receiving care,
every single year. This makes patient safety incidents the third leading cause of death in Canada, behind cancer and heart disease. One in three Canadians has had patient harm affect themselves or a loved one, yet the public is collectively unaware that the problem exists. This is a silent epidemic. If we do nothing, 1.2 million Canadians will die from preventable patient harm in the next 30 years.
What we must battle in our collective efforts to reduce patient harm, is systemic silence. Silence between patients and providers, between colleagues in healthcare facilities, between administrators in different regions and between the public and policymakers. If something looks wrong, feels wrong, or is wrong – we need people to speak up, in the moment. It is only by bringing these issues to light that we can begin to work together to solve them.
ParaMed’s Culture of Safety
At ParaMed what is a culture of safety?
- A culture of safety is the shared commitment of management and employees to ensure the safety of patients and employees.
- When something goes wrong, the focus is on how and why it happened, not on who was involved. The intent is to bring process failures and system issues to light, and to solve them in a non-biased non-threatening way.
- An organization with a culture of safety is a workplace where staff feel comfortable, confident and want to report:
- Unsafe work environments, processes;
- Mistakes, errors or close calls (“near-misses”) without fear of punishment;
- Unsafe patient situation, environments.
- The understanding that errors/incidents will occur but with openness and sharing lessons learned from the analysis of how and why errors/incidents occur, the outcome is the reduction and prevention of similar incidents.
Learn more about how to #ConquerSilence and advocate for yourself and others during Canadian Patient Safety Week at patientsafetyweek.ca.