Patient Safety

Patient safety is a priority for our health care system. Our vision for patient safety is that all patients receive the safest possible care.

This means

  • making patients partners in their care,
  • promoting an open and transparent patient safety culture, and
  • learning from near misses and mistakes

No patient expects to be harmed in health care. We all expect and hope that our treatment and our family’s treatment or care will be successful and safe. Yet we know that in health facilities all over the world, patients do suffer harm and it is sometimes avoidable. We must do all we can to minimise risks to help avoid patient safety problems

We are making progress in lots of areas. We have implemented many patient safety initiatives in recent years resulting in measurable improvements. Many of these have been in response to serious patient safety incidents.

Some of these initiatives include

World Patient Safety Day

The first World Patient Safety Day takes place on 17 September 2019. The theme is Patient Safety: A Global Health Priority and the message is Speak up for Patient Safety.

We are coming together with patients, families, caregivers, communities, colleagues, health-care leaders and policy makers everywhere to show our commitment to patient safety.

On the day some of our public buildings will bask in orange light along with public buildings and monuments across the world.

These buildings are

  • Dr. Steevens Hospital
  • National Ambulance Headquarters
  • Tallaght University Hospital, and
  • Department of Health

Join the conversation twitter using the hashtag #QIrelandPSD for a live all-Ireland tweet chat about patient safety.

Date: 17 September 2019

Time: 9pm to 10pm

Hosted by: the National Quality Improvement Team, the Quality Assurance and Verification Team, and Health and Social Care in Northern Ireland.

How we can play our part to improve patient safety?

  • Engage patients as partners in their care      
  • Involve patients in the design, planning and delivery of our health service
  • Communicate clearly with patients about their care
  • Speak up if you see something unsafe
  • Introduce yourself to patients and their family
  • Mind your personal health and wellbeing and look out for colleagues who need support
  • Improve the culture of your workplace by practising the 9 behaviours of Values in Action
  • Clean your hands properly when caring for patients to reduce risk of infection
  • Recognise, highlight and build on existing good patient safety practice in your workplace
  • Improve the quality and timeliness of incident reviews and learn from patient safety incidents
  • Know about the commons harm that happen in your clinical workplace
  • If you lead a team, create a  secure environment  for people to discuss their concerns
  • Keep good patient records and notes
  • Talk to patients about any changes to their medicines or care and encourage them to keep an up-to-date list of the medications they are taking

Related topics

Involving patients in the design, planning and delivery of health care

Communicating clearly with patients

Healthcare communication programme

HSE Open disclosure policy

Say #HelloMyNameis

Staff health and wellbeing

Values in Action

RESIST hand hygiene programme

From Safety I to Safety II   

Quality Improvement Division

Healthcare Records Management, Safe Patient Care Code of practice for healthcare records management

Know, Check, Ask