Engaging patient in patient safety (Opinion)

Dr. Dawn Evans

The connection that healthcare workers and patients share is being celebrated globally on World Patient Safety Day, September 17, 2023. From community healthcare systems like Barton Health, to the World Health Organization (WHO), the medical community is raising awareness of the importance of patient safety.  

Patients and visitors to Barton’s hospital and network of medical facilities might not realize the many systems and processes that take place behind the scenes to keep them safe during a visit to one of our facilities. Our teams across the organization have dedicated themselves to implementing system-wide practices and programs to reduce the risk of harm. We go above state and federal safety standards and the results are proof of Barton’s dedication to this important aspect of health care.  

Barton Health continues to receive high marks in safety and quality measurements, consistently performing above average compared to hospitals nationwide. This commitment to safety is demonstrated by national achievements, including Barton’s place on the Newsweek World’s Best Hospitals 2023 List, numerous ‘A’ grade safety awards from The Leapfrog Group, Cal Hospital Compare’s Honor Roll for California hospitals excelling in patient safety, maternity care, and opioid stewardship, and Exceptional performance in the Cynosure Health HQIC 2023 Sepsis Honor Roll Program, which recognizes our staff and physician’s commitment to addressing sepsis harm reduction and enacting sepsis prevention measures. 

While patient safety is a hospital’s primary focus, patients play a role as well. Evidence shows that when patients are treated as partners in their care, remarkable improvements are made in patient satisfaction, safety, and health outcomes.  

Patients are invited to become active members in their health care by adopting healthy habits; prioritizing physical and mental health; visiting their care team regularly for checkups, preventative screenings, and vaccinations; and being actively involved in their own care.  

During medical appointments, provide accurate information about your health and medical history and ask questions to ensure good communication. Medical interpreter services are available.  

Your health care team takes your safety seriously and encourages you to raise concerns with your provider. By communicating and working together, we can ensure the delivery of consistently exceptional care and help you meet your health goals. 

Dawn Evans, DNP, MSN, MBA, RN, PHN, CPPS, CPHQ, is the Director of Patient Safety, Quality, Infection Prevention, and Population Health at Barton Health. Consistently exceptional care isn’t just our promise; it’s in the proof. For more information on safety and quality measures at Barton, visit 

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