Creating Constructive Change after a Medical Error
Medical errors occur frequently in health care with lasting impacts for both the consumers and the health care professionals involved. The COVID-19 pandemic has created a sequela of events that have compounded existing stressors in the workplace which contribute to a propensity for error. When an error does occur, clinicians are often poorly supported, leading to detrimental impacts on their well-being and their ability to recover and grow following the event. These impacts have implications for systems learning, patient experience, and safety. Evidence from more than 20 years of research provides insights into strategies that can be applied by health care leaders, managers, and colleagues to respond proactively in order to optimize recovery and to implement constructive change following errors. In this session, attendees will learn about how making an error can impact clinicians and the approaches that can mitigate clinician suffering and promote individual and collective recovery.
At the conclusion of this session, participants will be able to:
• Describe the impacts and sequalae of making a medical error on clinicians and patient care
• Discuss the strategies that support and follow-up following a medical error that contribute to constructive changes being made in practice
• Explain how healthcare leaders can best support those involved in a medical error to enhance well-being and care
Reema Harrison, PhD
Reema Harrison, PhD, MSc, BSc (hons), a senior fellow of the Higher Education Academy, leads the Healthcare Engagement and Workplace Behaviour Research Stream, a team of health services researchers, at the Australian Institute of Health Innovation in Macquarie University. Dr. Harrison also holds adjunct appointments with UNSW School of Population Health and the Institute of Psychological Sciences at the University of Leeds in the United Kingdom. She is a mixed-methods researcher with expertise in using codesign and participatory approaches with diverse populations, and has a strong track record of translational health systems and services research, with demonstrated policy and practice impacts. As a result, Dr. Harrison is identified in the top 10% of patient safety experts internationally, and one of the top five in Australia. Dr. Harrison has published more than 100 peer-reviewed research articles, given more than 80 research presentations (including more than 30 keynote and invited), designed and delivered more than 10 undergraduate, postgraduate, or professional development courses, and supervised more than 30 higher degree research student projects. She is an associate editor for BMC Health Services Research and the Journal of Interprofessional Care.