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    World Patient Safety Day 2020

    Jens Hooiveld
    Last modified: Sep 9, 2020 11:49:53 AM

    On 17 September 2020, the World Health Organization, organizes World Patient Safety Day. The theme for this year is "Health Worker Safety: A Priority for Patient Safety". They call for everyone working in healthcare to speak up for health worker safety, which we fully support!

    Safety for the caregiver covers various aspects:

    • Healthcare providers are exposed to direct risks, like needles and splash incidents.
    • Many caregivers also have to deal with undesired behavior, like aggression.
    • The impact of an incident involving a patient on the caregiver. In this case the caregiver is also called 'second victim'.

    The safety of care professionals has a direct link to patient safety

    When a hospital or other care organization is committed to a safe working environment, this also contributes to improving employee satisfaction. This is a key precondition for creating the right culture and support to report incidents and, ultimately, improve the quality of care.

    "Increase the safety of the healthcare professional" is the 5th step in our roadmap to patient safety. The current COVID-19 pandemic makes it even more important to speak up for the safety of everyone working in healthcare. Most staff are accustomed to working in emergency situations, but the nature of working during a prolonged, worldwide pandemic makes the COVID-10 crisis unique.

    It’s well documented that providers lacking sufficient care during and after disasters show short- and long-term symptoms ranging from anxiety to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Check our blog for some tips on peer support during times of the corona crisis.

    The objectives of World Patient Safety Day 2020 are:

    1. Raise global awareness about the importance of health worker safety and its interlinkages with patient safety
    2. Engage multiple stakeholders and adopt multimodal strategies to improve the safety of health workers and patients
    3. Implement urgent and sustainable actions by all stakeholders which recognize and invest in the safety of health workers, as a priority for patient safety
    4. Provide due recognition of health workers’ dedication and hard work, particularly amid the current fight against COVID-19

    For more information about this campaign by WHO you can check their campaign website.

    In 2019, in more than 80 cities around the world iconic places and monuments were lit up in orange to celebrate World Patient Safety Day. That color symbolizes the central role patient safety plays in order to achieve universal health coverage. Also for 2020, they call for cities to make this same statement. Watch the video, to see the orange landmarks during the last World Patient Safety Day.


    Personal experience of a chief nursing officer

    Martie Moore wrote the compelling blog "The most important element of patient safety is usually the hardest to achieve" about an event that happened when she was the chief nursing officer in a US hospital. It shows the importance of creating the right culture and systems of support for our healthcare providers.

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