Representatives from the University of Washington Medical Center traveled across the country to learn about a patient safety program that was in place and being taught at Madigan Healthcare System just a few miles away.
Dr. Gene Peterson, associate medical director for the Center for Clinical Excellence at the UW Medical Center, attended a conference in Orlando, Fla., regarding Team Strategies to Enhance Performance and Patient Safety™, a program developed by the Department of Defense Patient Safety Program in collaboration with the Department of Health and Human Services' Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.
A planned hour-long meeting between Peterson and his team, Col. (Dr.) Peter Napolitano, Madigan's maternal-fetal medicine fellowship director, and Col. (Dr.) Peter Nielsen, Madigan's chief of obstetrics and gynecology, turned into an entire afternoon discussion about TeamSTEPPS™.
"Because of the close relationship between our OB departments, our physicians and leaders were excited to learn how teamwork and communication were being taught at Madigan, and they decided to learn about TeamSTEPPS™," Peterson said.
Two teams from UW Medical Center were then dispatched to Madigan to complete TeamSTEPPS™ training, designed to improve quality, safety and efficiency of health care through a teamwork system of communication.
"We were lucky to be able to have our OB team sitting with the Madigan team hearing the same message," Peterson said. "We have been grateful to train alongside Madigan providers."
Since the initial training, UW Medical Center implemented TeamSTEPPS™ in their obstetrical unit, and they plan to deploy the program in their newly-opened Center for Pain Relief and several outpatient surgery clinics. They are also partnering with Seattle Children's Hospital and Harborview Medical Center to ensure that staff, faculty and residents that move between the three organizations are learning the same format.
"Our relationship with Madigan has been very important for our successful introduction of TeamSTEPPS™," Peterson said. "Being able to train our providers next to Madigan staff has helped us."
According to Peterson, UW Medical Center is developing its own TeamSTEPPS™ training program, and is involving several of their departments, including Organizational Development and Training, the Institute for Simulation and Interprofessional Studies, Graduate Medical Education and the Center for Clinical Excellence.
Looking ahead, the UW Medical Center will become a west coast TeamSTEPPS™ training center in early 2010 under contract from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.
"We hope that as we move forward, we will be able to contribute back to Madigan," Peterson said. "We look forward to working with Madigan in the years ahead, since teamwork and communication is the key to becoming a high reliability organization."

Page last updated Tue November 3rd, 2009 at 15:49