Today, the National Patient Safety Council released "Free From Harm", a report on patient safety timed to coincide with the 15th anniversary of the "To Err Is Human" report from the Institute of Medicine that brought patient safety issues and research into the national spotlight.
IHPI member Sanjay Saint, M.D., MPH, took part in the expert panel that helped the NPSF prepare the report and its recommendations. Saint heads the Patient Safety Enhancement Program, a joint effort of the U-M Medical School and VA Ann Arbor Healthcare System, where he is chief of medicine.
"Patient safety is a serious public health issue and needs to be regarded as such," says Saint. "The report draws upon data that were previously available, but puts that information into context to explain why we are still struggling with patient safety and how we need to refocus for more impact. One key area is the need for increased funding for the kind of data-driven patient safety research we at IHPI perform. Right now, the research budget for patient safety related projects is quite small in comparison to the impact medical and surgical errors have. More research will be key to making care as safe as possible in any setting."