More than 200,000 lives are lost each year in our country due to preventable medical error and hospital-acquired conditions while in the care setting. One additional life will be lost in the time it takes to read this website introductory page. Our caregivers arrive every day wanting to work in a safe environment, and their lives are also greatly affected when a patient is harmed.
Our governance boards are ultimately responsible and accountable for patient safety and quality. Board members, among other duties, have fiduciary responsibilities of: a) “obedience” – to make decisions consistent with the organization’s mission; b) “loyalty” – to act in the organization’s best interest; and c) “care” – to actively represent the organization’s stakeholders.
While the board has ultimate patient safety responsibility, the CEO, C-suite, and clinical and administrative safety leadership have 24/7 operational responsibility. The board provides direction and needs safety leaders to execute. Safety leaders need the board to provide direction, oversee, and support their actions. The board and safety leaders together need the critical input of the organization’s number one safety stakeholder: the patients and their families.
The Patient Safety-Focused Boardroom:
The ideal “space” for this partnership to best function is the enhanced patient safety-focused boardroom. Not the traditional room where the board members and the CEO meet, but the boardroom where board members are able to hear the voice of all patient safety stakeholders and engage in open dialogue to meet the demanding challenges of improving patient safety. The enhanced boardroom needs to routinely include: a) patients and their families; b) the organization’s bedside caregivers; c) the board’s safety and quality, patient service, human resource, and credentialing committees; d) independent and employed physicians and clinicians; and e) the senior operating, medical, nursing, financial, information, patient safety, and general counsel leadership.
The decisions and commitments made in this boardroom will result in real and sustainable improvements in patient safety.
The engaged hospital boardroom that acknowledges its patient safety responsibilities, and recognizes the organization’s need to improve, is then typically faced with the questions of:
- Can we make a meaningful difference in our patient safety outcomes?
- What best practices have been utilized by high-performing boardrooms to improve their care environments?
- Are the cost-beneficial resources available to assist in our safety improvement journey?
CareBoards was established by TMIT in 2010 to focus upon “Saving Lives from the Boardroom,” and was specifically structured to support the boardroom to save lives and prevent patient harm.
CareBoards’ mission is to save lives, save money, and create value in the communities we serve by providing the most effective systems, practices, and tools for hospital boardrooms to utilize in support of their patient safety improvement actions.
CareBoards® Leadership Team:
CareBoards will be establishing a boardroom team of highly qualified experts in governance, executive leadership, and safety and quality from within and outside the healthcare sector. The board will provide direction, establish goals and objectives, and ensure that resources are available for CareBoards to effectively fulfill its long-term commitments to the boardroom.
CareBoards® Boardroom Support:
During the last five years, many patient safety-supporting publications, books, presentations, and tools have emerged through the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, the Center for Healthcare Governance, the Healthcare Research and Educational Trust, the Estes Park Institute, Great Boards, The Joint Commission, the National Association of Public Hospitals and Health Systems, the National Center for Healthcare Leadership, the National Quality Forum, the Governance Institute, and a number of individual authors. Great work has been accomplished by these organizations.
Yet the boardroom that desires to embark upon its improvement voyage is faced with a widely scattered set of resources, most focused upon governance or the C-suite, not the boardroom; the currency of the data varies greatly; few of these resources include safety lessons from outside healthcare; some but not all are based upon feedback evidence; none is linked to the National Quality Forum Safe Practices; and access restrictions and costs vary significantly.
CareBoards intends to build out this portal over time to engage and partner with boardrooms to inspire and support their patient safety improvement actions by providing:
- Stories of high-performing boardrooms that have made a difference, to support the courage and build the will for change.
- Best practices utilized by high-performing boardrooms for assessing performance, ensuring safety accountability, and providing the ability to change and initiate improvement actions. These practices will be linked to the NQF Safe Practices and will be supported with articles, videos, and webinar downloads as available.
- Boardroom alerts about specific emerging patient safety risks, with accompanying boardroom best practices for getting ahead of the challenge.
- References to supporting organizations and resources that can be of assistance to the boardrooms in their improvement voyage.
- Suggested steps for patient safety stakeholders to engage with “their” boardrooms.
If you would like further information on this program, you can e-mail us by clicking here. Please type CareBoards in the subject line.