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Critical Care Nursing Clinics of North America

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We are at a crossroad in patient safety. Patient safety definitions, research, products, and implementation strategies have become as complex as health care itself. Almost every professional and regulatory organization now has a position or strategy to address the estimated 44,000 to 98,000 deaths per year due to health care error[1]. Memorizing and implementing the Joint Commission for Accreditation National Patient Safety Goals is not enough to establish and maintain a culture of safety. Patient safety literature offers few practical solutions on the implementation of an integrated, system wide application of patient safety approaches to clinical practice. It is our responsibility to teach those who provide direct patient care the concepts of patient safety and to provide a knowledge management network to support patient safety knowledge. In turn, the frontline practitioners can teach us about the patient safety challenges they face on a daily basis. Only then can we solve frontline patient safety issues.

The Clarian Safe Passage1Program, in which trained staff nurses serve as the unit patient safety experts, in concert with the American Association of Critical Care Nurses (AACN) Synergy Model of Patient Care, have provided a patient safety knowledge and mentoring program that gives staff nurses the skills and tools to identify and address patient safety issues on a day-to-day basis.


Accepted version. Critical Care Nursing Clinics of North America, Vol. 17, No. 2 (June 2005): 121-126. DOI. © Elsevier. Used with permission.

Kathryn Rapala was affiliated with Clarian Health Partners at the time of publication.

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