Dr. Mahaniah brings frontline experience to his new role as Undersecretary for Health in the state’s Executive Office of Health and Human Services. During his time as CEO and primary care physician at Lynn Community Health Center, he saw firsthand how patients struggle with health care’s complexity and urges organizations to embed safety at a system level for best results. Dr. Mahaniah talks with Patient Safety Beat about promoting health care safety as a discipline and daily practice, using the metaphor of finding “rocks in the riverbed” from Lean training.
Many Patient and Family Advisory Councils (PFACs) serving as the patient voice at hospitals and accountable care organizations in the state are transitioning from COVID-related conditions to addressing ongoing concerns including diversity and inclusion. At Cooley Dickinson Hospital in Northampton, the PFAC reached out to local social service agencies and colleges for help in expanding its membership and made other changes to enhance its contributions to the hospital and community. And, through the state’s new Roadmap to Health Care Safety, efforts are underway to strengthen the impact PFACs can have on the safety and quality of care available across the state.

A comprehensive online library from the Betsy Lehman Center offers guidelines, tools, research and other resources to all who participate in Communication, Apology and Resolution (CARe) efforts or are interested in starting a CARe program in their organization. CARe calls for prompt, empathic, and transparent communication with patients and families after an adverse event and support for clinicians in disclosing events to patients. CARe also helps organizations determine what caused an adverse event and institute new systems or practices to prevent the same thing from happening again. The library has offerings for patients, families, clinicians, administrators and attorneys, as well as simulations and case studies that illustrate best practices.

Upcoming events
June 12 - Aug. 17
Now accepting applications: John M. Eisenberg Patient Safety and Quality Awards. The annual Eisenberg Awards recognize major achievements by individuals and organizations in patient safety and health care quality. Co-sponsored by the National Quality Forum and The Joint Commission. Learn more
Sept. 29
9 a.m. - 1 p.m.
Save the Date: 10th annual Communication, Apology and Resolution (CARe) Forum. This year’s CARe Forum will present case simulations and other material for live discussion in Boston, with an online option. Registration is free and will open at the end of the summer. For more information, contact Melinda Van Niel, CARe Program Director.
Patient Safety Beat is published by the Betsy Lehman Center, a Massachusetts state agency that supports providers, patients and policymakers working together to advance the safety and quality of health care.