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Pinnacle 2019

July 22, 2019 @ 8:00 am - July 26, 2019 @ 5:00 pm

We are proud to be a supporter of this year’s annual Pinnacle conference and we hope to see you there! Come by booth #74 to connect with our team and discuss patient safety in EMS! CPS Director, Lee Varner, MSEMS will be presenting a Power Session during the pre-conference workshops on July 22. See below for more information.


Implementing the Four Cornerstones of a Sustainable EMS Safety Culture

Monday, July 22  |  1:00 pm – 4:45 pm

Presenters: Ron Thackery, JD; Joe Coons; Ben Abes, MPH; Lee Varner, MSEMS

Establishing and maintaining an organizational culture of safety requires strong and active leadership based on four cornerstone strategies: measurement, accountability, good relationships, and discretionary effort. But it takes more than checking boxes. Each of these cornerstones must be thoughtfully implemented. What gets measured, and how, can either find gaps and encourage healthy ways to close them—or incentivize caregivers to lie, obscure or deceive management. Accountability comes in two forms: blame and shame or a forward-looking approach that acknowledges mistakes and focuses on safety improvements to prevent future mishaps. Great safety cultures are characterized by good relationships at all levels, which enable honest, two-way conversations about what is working and what isn’t. Finally, many people think of safety only as compliance with procedures and policies. However, to create a high-performance EMS safety culture, a discretionary effort above and beyond compliance is necessary. In this interactive session, we’ll break down the development of a culture of safety into components that are easy to understand and simple to start implementing.

You will learn how to:

  • Address the 12 dimensions of safety attitudes and perceptions
  • Develop safety metrics that matter
  • Move from blame and shame to just culture
  • Communicate with safety as a priority
  • Move beyond the basics of compliance to high-performance safety

Faculty includes leading safety experts from the industry. Ben Abes, MPH, serves as director of public safety for emergency response and communications and EMS chief in Lee County, Florida. Joe Coons is the director of safety and communications for LifeFlight-Eagle, a regional non-profit air medical program based in Kansas City. Ron Thackery, JD, CEO of the Thackery Group, formerly served as senior vice president of AMR, overseeing its nationwide safety and risk management programs. Lee Varner, MSEMS, is the director of patient safety for the Center for Patient Safety and a certified professional in patient safety.


More than just another conference, Pinnacle helps you gain the knowledge – and the network – needed to move from EMS leader to healthcare leader.




July 22, 2019 @ 8:00 am
July 26, 2019 @ 5:00 pm


Rosen Shingle Creek
9939 Universal Blvd.
Orlando, FL 32819 United States
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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.