Emergency Medical Services (EMS)

Every day, the men and women in Emergency Medical Services (EMS) answer the call to help those in their hour of need. These professionals bring compassion, enthusiasm and dependability in, often, very challenging environments. CPS is honored to be an EMS partner in safety. CPS envisions a healthcare environment safe for all patients and healthcare providers, in all processes, all the time.

Patient safety is an area that hasn’t been studied in depth or researched intensively in EMS. Likewise, there are still many educational challenges as well as misconceptions that exist when it comes to patent safety. Some of these include the thought that patient safety is only about the provider not making a mistake; and if one occurs, it was because they were careless. Contrary to that belief, we should start by learning what medical errors are occurring, why they occur and then apply methods to prevent them. This includes understanding the systems, processes and how we work in our environments. In addition, it’s important to understand how a culture promotes safe systems and safe individualized care, utilizing strong teamwork and clear communication.

Many EMS organizations have adopted patient and provider safety as a core value, investing resources to improve the cultural climate for safety. Others have been watching closely, learning where to start, while some are waiting to take those first steps. Regardless, safety is a journey and not a race. Taking the first step is the most important part of that journey.

CPS’ goal is to offer timely solutions and resources to improve patient safety culture, including tools and assistance with implementation and measurement. Leveraging ten years’ experience with other providers, CPS is positioned to translate safety knowledge and lessons learned to EMS. While EMS is a profession and dimension of healthcare different from other settings, there are universal theories and principles that hold true for all providers.

Over the past year the Center has improved many processes and updated services, including innovative approaches to patient and provider safety. Likewise, CPS continually strives to effectively share patient safety information and the important role that culture plays in safety. An example is the Center’s safety campaign called EMSFORWARD, which focuses on ten areas of patient and provider safety. A campaign-based report offers an opportunity to find engagement, discussion and action around safety. CPS looks forward to similar opportunities to provide useful, actionable information that will move EMS safety forward in the years to come.

The Center will continue to reach out and serve as a resource to EMS organizations and focus on three objectives:

  1. Protecting – individualized guidance for EMS to maximize federal protection for their safety and quality analysis and deliberations
  2. Learning – new opportunities for PSO participants to improve their safety culture and improve their care
  3. Preventing – using the data in the PSO database to identify opportunities for EMS providers to reduce adverse events and patient harm

The Center values all providers and looks forward to a long future as partners to improve patient safety for all individuals.

PSO Services:
PSO Services

Culture Services:
Survey on Patient Safety Culture
Comprehensive Unit-based Safety Program
Just Culture
Second Victim Experience

Learn More:
Hospitals & ASCs working with CPS
CPS PSO Advisory Committee

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The Center for Patient Safety believes that collaboration and sharing are the best ways to drive improvement. We strive to provide the right solutions and resources to improve healthcare safety and quality.