Imperial College London

WISH launches accelerator programme to reduce deaths caused by patient care


patient in ambulance

Collaboration with IGHI sees publication of report assessing patient safety effectiveness across health systems

WISH logoThe World Innovation Summit for Health (WISH), a global initiative of Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development (QF), in partnership with Imperial's Institute of Global Health Innovation, has today launched a ‘Safer Care Accelerator’ programme that aims to share global best practices in care and treatment to expedite improvement in patient safety.

Patient safety is the third biggest killer in the US and costs USD1trillion a year. Errors in treatment and care are claiming 400,000 lives each year¹. Meanwhile, 1 in 10 patients is harmed while receiving hospital care².

Failure to address the growing concern of patient safety contributes to waste in the healthcare system and sky-rocketing costs. It is estimated that as much as one-third of all US healthcare spending was consumed by waste in 2011³. Patient Safety is clearly a serious public health issue and yet is often overlooked in national policy and global agendas.

In response to this challenge, the ‘Safer Care Accelerator’, a year-long programme, will bring together an international group of healthcare organisations concerned with the unprecedented costs, financial and physical, associated with poor patient safety.  Throughout the year, members will exchange insights, experiences, and data on the topic of patient safety, culminating in the publication of a global report.  So far, 15 organisations spanning six continents have joined the effort. 

WISH is spearheaded by Qatar Foundation to inspire and diffuse healthcare innovation and best practice. It remains closely aligned to the vision and mission of QF to unlock human potential and reinforces Qatar’s pioneering role as an emerging centre for healthcare innovation. The past two WISH summits have been held in Doha, attracting leaders from the global healthcare community.

The ‘Safer Care Accelerator’ programme is part of WISH and IGHI's Leading Health Systems Network (LHSN) initiative. Set up in 2009, LHSN has worked with 21 health systems in 11 countries helping them to overcome the challenges they face in providing high value care to the populations they serve. Members of LHSN compare performance relative to their peers, learn from experts and frontline implementers during webinars, and are active members in a community committed to care improvement and innovation. 

WISH published a complementary report on Patient Safety last month, identifying reasons for the on-going heartbreak of preventable harm in healthcare and offering solutions to bridge the gaps prevalent in today’s approach to Patient Safety.

Dr Peter Pronovost, Senior Vice President for Patient Safety and Quality and Director of the Armstrong Institute for Patient Safety and Quality at John Hopkins Medicine in the United States, who has been appointed as the WISH Patient Safety Forum Chair, identified key issues such as lack of regulation, understanding and integration, as well as offered a range of innovative solutions that will provide recommendations to global policy makers. 

Professor The Lord Darzi of Denham, Director of IGHI and Executive Chair of WISH, said: “Last year, over EURO5bn was spent on patients who contracted infections while receiving care in the EU alone. The WISH report offered valuable case studies and evidence to support policy level recommendations to start turning the tide on these figures. The LHSN Safer Care Accelerator allows health care providers to share their own insights, learn about best practice, and access key analytics. This multidisciplinary approach offers us a comprehensive toolkit fromwhichto improve safety records and with it, patient experience.”

Through the Safer Care Accelerator, WISH and LHSN hope to provide learnings, insights and recommendations to enable healthcare workers and policymakers to better prioritise initiatives that will improve safety, experience and outcomes for patients, crucially saving lives and reducing the burden on healthcare budgets.

To download the WISH Patient Safety report and learn more, please visit:


Jo Seed

Jo Seed
Institute of Global Health Innovation

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