Voluntary Patient Safety Advocate
Spectrum Health – former Hospital Group Board, Quality & Safety Committee Member
and Executive PFAC former Member and Chair
TMIT Patient Advocate Team Member
Retired Healthcare Executive Search Consultant
Vietnam Veteran, Naval Aviator
Rockford, MI

Dan Ford, MBA, LFACHE, developed a deep passion for patient safety as a result of medical errors experienced in Illinois by his first wife, Diane, and the treatment he experienced when he started asking logical and genuine questions. The mother of three children (11, 14, and 17 at the time) and age 47, Diane was pursuing her second master’s degree, and suffered a morphine-induced respiratory arrest following a hysterectomy. She has permanent brain damage/short-term memory loss and a poor quality of life, and resides in an independent living facility.

Desiring to convert his anger, hurt, and frustration into constructive change – delayed because of a nine-year medical malpractice lawsuit – and using his visibility as a healthcare executive search consultant, Dan became a patient safety advocate in 2002. He has given 90 patient safety presentations to boards of directors, management, and physician leadership of hospitals, systems, other provider organizations, and HRSA. He is a CAPS member and WHO/PAHO champion, and works with TMIT and a group of other patient safety advocates on listening, disclosure, and related initiatives.

He has served on a number of other provider patient safety and quality committees nationally and in Arizona, including ISMP, NQF, The Joint Commission, IHI, AzHHA, Catholic Health Partners, and Carondelet Health Network. He helped to plan and facilitate CAPS “Partnering with Provider” workshops at Northwestern Memorial in Chicago, Johns Hopkins in Baltimore, and AzHHA in Phoenix in 2008 and 2009.

In 2010, Dan was a co-author, with Bev Johnson and Marie Abraham, of “Collaborating with patients and their families” in the Journal of Healthcare Risk Management, the journal of the American Society for Healthcare Risk Management. The story of serious medical errors experienced by Dan’s wife and the impacts his family has endured is told in a chapter of Dr. Sanjay Kumar’s book, Fatal Care: Survive in the U.S. Health System. Dan authored an article on patient and family involvement in root cause analyses, which appeared in the December 2013 online issue of Dorland Health’s Case in Point.

Dan is a retired Vice President with Furst Group, a national healthcare executive search firm headquartered in Rockford, Illinois. His MBA is from the University of Chicago, preceded by a BS from Jamestown University in North Dakota. He was in the Navy from 1964-69, a Naval Aviator in a transport squadron which serviced the fleet in the Pacific during the Vietnam War.