Patient and two cliniciansPatient safety plays a key role in surgery. From when the patient first comes in and is administered with an anaesthetic, to the last point of care where the patient is in recovery, safety needs of the patient are paramount.

The NIHR Imperial Patient Safety Translational Research Centre not only works to address myriad areas of patient safety concerns in surgery, it also aims to translate those research findings into practice


Other patient safety research themes

Organisational healthcare and healthcare organisations

Within the National Health Service (NHS) there is an ever increasing emphasis on the delivery of high-quality patient care. However, in the current climate of financial austerity, there is also a need to reduce costs and create ‘high performing’, ‘high reliability’ and ‘learning’ healthcare organisations or systems. This, of course, demands the measurement and comparison of organisational performance outcomes such as length of stay, infection rates and mortality.

There is increasing evidence from outside the sphere of healthcare (particularly from the world of business) that, to best facilitate high organisational performance, it is important to focus on the elements within an organisation that allow such performance to be created and maintained. An organisation with a strong provision of these elements can be considered a ‘healthy’ one, and this concept can be found in the literature as far back as the 1950s. Healthy organisations have a culture promoting trust, openness and engagement and enabling continuous learning and improvement. In comparison with other organisational sectors, there has been a relative dearth of research into the organisational health of healthcare organisations.

We believe that the use of a validated measurement tool for measuring the organisational health of a hospital would be useful to assess its strengths and weaknesses and also enable comparisons to be made with other hospitals or organisations; allowing benchmarking of an important but under-recognised organisational metric. It would allow progress to be tracked to reward successes and highlight potential problems early. It would provide a means of measuring the ‘soft’ or nebulous elements that can influence organisational performance and also enable targeted interventions to drive sustainable long-lasting organisational change to be prioritised.


Key members in patient safety