Facts about the Patient Safety Advisory Group | Joint Commission

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Facts about the Patient Safety Advisory Group

December 5, 2017

In April 2002, The Joint Commission appointed a panel of widely recognized patient safety experts to advise it on the development of Sentinel Event Alert, The Joint Commission’s patient safety newsletter. At that time, the panel was named the Sentinel Event Advisory Group. Over time, the group’s responsibilities expanded to include advising on National Patient Safety Goals, and in 2009 the panel was renamed the Patient Safety Advisory Group. The group is comprised of nurses, physicians, pharmacists, risk managers and other professionals who have hands-on experience in addressing patient safety issues in a wide variety of health care settings. 

The Patient Safety Advisory Group advises The Joint Commission on existing, newly identified and emerging patient safety risks. The Group also advises on the most effective methods that The Joint Commission, Joint Commission Resources, and the Joint Commission Center for Transforming Healthcare might employ to assist health care organizations in identifying and reducing these patient safety risks. The Patient Safety Advisory Group:

  • Annually recommends program-specific National Patient Safety Goals for adoption by The Joint Commission Board of Commissioners. 
  • Reviews draft patient safety recommendations for potential publication in the Joint Commission’s periodic Sentinel Event Alert advisory, and advises Joint Commission staff as to the evidence for and face validity of these recommendations, as well as their practicality and cost of implementation.
  • Recommends potential future topics for Sentinel Event Alert.
  • Assesses and facilitates learning initiatives about sentinel events, Sentinel Event Alerts, and the National Patient Safety Goals, including the implementation and effectiveness of the National Patient Safety Goals. Learning initiatives include on-line tools such as Frequently Asked Questions and PowerPoint presentations; tool kits to facilitate implementation of the National Patient Safety Goals; and educational seminars and workshops.  

Advisory group members

Patrick J. Brennan, MD, Professor of Medicine, Chief Medical Officer, University of Pennsylvania Health System

Todd Bridges, RPh, Director, Division of Medication Error Prevention and Analysis, Office of Medication Error Prevention and Risk Management, Office of Surveillance and Epidemiology, Food and Drug Administration

Michael Cohen, RPh, MS, ScD, President, Institute for Safe Medication Practices

Michael El-Shammaa, Branch Chief, Clinical Outreach Branch I, Food and Drug Administration; CDRH-Medical Product Safety Network (MedSun Project)

Frank Federico, BS, RPh, Executive Director, Institute for Healthcare Improvement 

Marilyn Flack, MA, PMP, Senior Vice President, Patient Safety Initiatives, Executive Director, AAMI Foundation/Healthcare Technology Safety Institute

Tejal Gandhi, MD, MPH, CPPS, Chief Clinical & Safety Officer, Institute for Healthcare Improvement/National Patient Safety Foundation

Martin J. Hatlie, Esq, President, Partnership for Patient Safety

Robin R. Hemphill, MD, MPH, VHA Chief Safety and Risk Awareness Officer, Director, National Center for Patient Safety

Paul Kelley, CBET, Director, Biomedical Engineering and Green Initiative, Washington Hospital

Heidi B. King, MS, FACHE, BCC, CMC, CPPS, Acting Director, Department of Defense Patient Safety Program, Office of the Chief Medical Officer, TRICARE Management Activity

Deborah Pasko, PharmD, MHA, Director, Medication Safety & Quality, Center on Medication Safety & Quality, Office of Practice Advancement, American Society of Health-System Pharmacists

Grena Porto, RN, MS, ARM, CPHRM, Practice Leader – Healthcare, ESIS Health, Safety & Environmental

Matthew Scanlon, MD, Professor of Pediatrics, Critical Care, Medical College of Wisconsin; Knowledge and Solutions Architect, Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin

Ronni P. Solomon, JD, Executive Vice President and General Counsel, ECRI Institute

Dana Swenson, PE, MBA, Vice President, Facilities, UMass Memorial Health Care 

For more information, contact Ana Pujols McKee, MD, executive vice president & chief medical officer, amckee@jointcommission.org or 630-792-5350 or visit www.jointcommission.org.