As I reflect back on 2012, one thing is abundantly clear: ASK. LISTEN. TALK. is alive within the Canadian health care system.
At the Canadian Patient Safety Institute (CPSI), we have adopted ASK. LISTEN. TALK. as a framework to nurture the growth of the seeds of success, skills, talents, potentialities and enthusiasm; create new conversations; test assumptions held and raise the quality and patient safety bar.
This past year has demonstrated that ASK. LISTEN. TALK. is taking hold at every level of the system – not because we’ve pushed it, but because the everyday human concepts it represents are things that we all value, support and appreciate.
Great healthcare starts with a question – ASK.
Great healthcare requires an open mind – LISTEN.
Great healthcare requires a responsive heart – TALK.
It’s incredible to see how many individuals and organizations are also drawn to these three words and have adapted them to the work that they do. A perfect example is our Medication Safety Video Contest where many of the video entries we received used ASK. LISTEN. TALK. as a focal point for the messages they convey and the impact they’ve had on their own improvement efforts.
Earlier this year, our mantra of ASK. LISTEN. TALK. was put to the test when we had an independent evaluation performed to measure our impact on the health care system.
This evaluation not only showcases the collaborative work that CPSI has done in the last 5 years, but also the impact that CPSI with its many partners have had on the health system in Canada. Key highlights of this include accelerated awareness and capacity development for patient safety issues and improved collaboration on these issues across the system. CPSI has also been acknowledged as providing high value by producing evidence-based products and services that have been shown to change practice in all levels of healthcare.
The following recommendations from the evaluation report provide CPSI with directions to chart a different future for our organization:
1. CPSI should review its current portfolio of activities and offerings with the intention of rationalizing or focusing;
2. CPSI should seek opportunities to enhance engagement with the system; and
3. CPSI should continue to find ways to embed ownership of major programs and services within the system.
The evaluators asked, the system spoke, and we have listened. As 2012 winds down and a new year unfolds, we are working to put action to these recommendations to ensure that we continue to provide value to the healthcare system and that the we continue to close the gap between the healthcare we have, and the healthcare we deserve.
While patient safety progress is happening, the toll of harm still exists. With your efforts we can create a tidal wave of patient safety improvement. “We” means all of us. We all have either the legal or moral authority to promote quality and patient safety; some have both. Collectively, we have the power to make healthcare accountable to the patient, resident or client.
In closing, I want to extend my sincere thanks to the thousands of people from across this nation working tirelessly every day to advance patient safety and quality improvement. From coast to coast – from board room to bed side – from research to tools and interventions – from policy and funding to operational actions – you are making a difference.
With so many people tapped in from all corners of the country, we are a network. A network of people, groups and organizations dedicated to improving patient safety and quality. It’s up to us to ensure that everything that has been achieved, shared and learned is not in vain, but that it is applied to our patient safety and quality work. As we move forward, we will continue to ASK. LISTEN. TALK. and encourage you to do the same – let the conversation begin.