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By: Denys Court

Getting to Safe

Pages: 372 Ratings:
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For patient safety to flourish, those who provide care must also be flourishing. That is what this book is about. It is people working in mutually supportive professional relationships and who are supported by safe systems who are best enabled to provide safe care. The goal of this book is to enable reflection on how to achieve that shared concept of safety. Some suggest that health should be more like the aviation industry, which is properly considered safe because its accident rate is so very low. But if an aircraft is ‘understaffed’, it simply does not fly. An understaffed hospital ward is never told it can’t fly; its staff is more likely to be asked to do more with less. For this and many other reasons, there is a limit to the extent that systems can provide safe environments in the health sector. There is so much unpredictability that it is frequently not the rules and guidelines that determine safety but the actions of individuals and the teams in which they work, and their ability to work around the unexpected that determine it. For that to be possible and effective, these teams and individuals need to be supported, safe and resilient also. This book examines how healthcare professionals can get to a safer place in their workplace and, by doing so, keep their patients safer.

Denys Court is an obstetrician-gynaecologist who has worked in New Zealand, Canada and the United States. His experience includes many years in health leadership. He is also qualified in law and has extensive experience as an advisor in a medical indemnity organisation, as well as a facilitator of communication skills workshops for health professionals. He chairs a clinical ethics advisory group for a District Health Board and is a credentialed mediator and conflict management coach.

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