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Supporting healthcare professionals

Healthcare professionals are often profoundly affected by involvement in harmful incidents. They require considerable collegiate and institutional support to cope with the effects of patient harm, and throughout open disclosure.

Key factors in supporting healthcare professionals

Two key factors in supporting healthcare professionals are:

  • Comprehensive education and development in open disclosure and communication
  • Fostering an organisational culture of openness, transparency, respect and patient-centredness.

This GE Healthcare webcast features Dr. Albert Wu, professor at Johns Hopkins and Jim Conway, adjunct faculty at Harvard School of Public Health who discuss the concept of the second victim, including:

  • What is a successful second victim support program and what are the measures for success?
  • How can leaders create a culture that supports second victims?
  • How should institutions proactively plan to respond to patients, caregivers, media, and board members when an adverse event occurs?

The editorial Medical error, incident investigation and the second victim: doing better but feeling worse? highlights the importance of peer and institutional support for clinicians throughout the incident investigation process.

In this presentation, emergency physician Brian Goldman calls on the medical profession to end the culture of denial and shame. He encourages his colleagues to start talking about making mistakes, and use these to learn and improve.

In this two-part BBC broadcast, Professor James Reason reports on open disclosure and how it can improve standards of safety and quality and on the importance of supporting healthcare providers in acknowledging and responding to patient harm.  

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