Betsy Lehman’s legacy is fresh in our thoughts this month, the 25th anniversary of her death. Ms. Lehman was the mother of two young girls and a health reporter at The Boston Globe when she received an overdose of chemotherapy during treatment for breast cancer at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. In the aftermath, her Globe colleagues wrote extensively about vulnerabilities in the care delivery system – vulnerabilities that were far more common than the medical community had recognized. Her death became a defining moment in patient safety.
We’re grateful to Dr. Joseph Jacobson, Chief Quality Officer at Dana-Farber, for sharing his perspective on progress over the past 25 years and remaining challenges in this issue of Patient Safety Beat. Dr. Jacobson is currently leading a team to transform the way patient safety work is conceptualized and executed at Dana-Farber.
This year is also notable for our first-in-the-nation effort to create a Roadmap to Patient Safety, a statewide action plan to dramatically improve safety in all care settings – first of our top stories below. We believe Massachusetts is well-positioned to lead the way on this challenge.
With best wishes for a happy, healthy holiday season and New Year,
Barbara Fain, Executive Director