Brief

Merger ahead for two nonprofit patient safety organizations

Dive Brief:

  • The Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) and the National Patient Safety Foundation (NPSF) announced they will merge and begin functioning as a single entity May 1.

  • IHI President Derek Feeley will lead the combined organization while NPSF President and CEO Dr. Tejal will oversee patient safety programs.

  • The announcement coincided with the release of an NPSF call to action that encourages the adoption of a public health response to preventable harm in healthcare.

Dive Insight:

The merger is intended to leverage the unique strengths of each organization to promote patient safety. NPSF was founded in 1997 and focuses specifically on safety in healthcare while IHI, established more than 25 years ago, maintains a broader set of goals aimed at quality, cost and value.

Medical errors are the third leading cause of death in the United States, according to a study published by BMJ in May 2016. While healthcare is typically safe, complexity within the system, which grows as new technologies and treatments are introduced, has put some patients at risk. The current response to incidents that result in preventable harm in healthcare are too uncoordinated and reactive to drive significant progress in patient safety, according to the NPSF call to action.

NPSF suggest policymakers take a more concerted approach to addressing patient safety by establishing a public health framework that encourages cooperation among stakeholders to identify areas of concern and to develop system wide strategies and tactics to reduce instances of preventable harm. The urgency of the call to action echoes the sentiment expressed throughout a recent IHI white paper on patient safety. By absorbing NPSF, IHI is gaining expertise in the area of patient safety and indicating it will more enthusiastically pursue the cause moving forward.

Filed Under: Policy & Regulation
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