At Flagstaff Medical Center (FMC) we have a dedicated Patient Safety Program Coordinator as well as a Patient Safety Officer who is a member of our medical staff. The two collaborate with all staff members regarding patient safety issues, annual safety goals and review/investigation of reported events.
FMC also has several multidisciplinary, data-driven teams focused on patient safety issues based on patient experience, clinical need or to support or goals to reach best-in-class status. These include a medication management team (with emphasis on anticoagulation safety, high-risk medications, insulin, smart pump usage, etc.), a never-events task force and a fall prevention committee.
Keeping You Safe
Flagstaff Medical Center has developed a brochure outlining the top ten things you can do as our partner in ensuring your safety while you are a patient with us. If you did not receive a copy of the Top Ten for Safety brochure during the admission process, please ask your nurse for a copy. The top ten also are listed below.
Our staff will repeatedly ask you questions to verify your identity while you are a patient here. These questions are one of the key ways we can keep you safe.
Top-Ten for Safety
During your stay with us, please become our safety partner by asking the top ten Safety Questions. If you are a family member or guardian, you can help by asking these questions on behalf of your loved one:
- Hand washing – Before your care providers touch you, ask them if they washed their hands. Your care providers include your physician, nurse, radiology technologist, etc.
- Medication safety – If your nurse did not ask you who you are, check your arm band, tell you what medication you are being given and what the medication is for, please ask to have these questions answered before you take any medication.
- Plan of care – If you do not know why you are in the hospital and what your treatment is, please ask.
- Allergies – If you have allergies to any food or any medicine, including over-the-counter medicine or herbs, please tell us right away.
- Drug reactions – Please tell us all the medicines, herbs and over-the-counter medicines you are taking. Leave nothing out.
- Know the staff – You should know who each person caring for you is. If you do not know who they are or what their job is, please ask.
- Consent and right location for surgery – If you are having surgery, please review with our surgery staff what surgery you are scheduled for and where the surgical site is.
- Fall prevention – If for any reason you feel you might be unstable on your feet, please ask for help.
- Pain management – If your pain is not controlled, please tell us immediately.
- Patient satisfaction – If you are unhappy with any of the care or services we have provided to you or your family, please tell us immediately so that we can meet your needs.
Sunflowers For Your Safety: At Flagstaff Medical Center, we have taken extra steps to ensure the safety of our patients, including persons of size or those individuals who feel they may need a little extra support. Look for sunflower stickers on bathroom stalls and public furniture to indicate this furniture and equipment is safe for those who need additional support.
FMC's patient safety system modeled after the aviation industry
LifeWings takes safety and procedure methods from the aviation industry and adapts it to healthcare. The program is modeled after the uninterrupted procedures pilots and co-pilots must go through before they take-off.
The system was first implemented in FMC’s Surgical Services where nearly 300 employees in the department have been trained in the LifeWings program. Before beginning a procedure, surgical staff including surgeons, anesthesiologists, nurses, technicians and any other member of the surgical team must go through a checklist of quality and safety procedures in addition to a mandatory time out to verify the patient and the procedure before starting surgery. After surgery is completed, the surgeon leads a debriefing to discuss any issues and opportunities for improvement. All comments are captured and stored electronically and reviewed.
“The LifeWings program is another tool we can implement that allows us to be even more patient safety minded and our patients will reap the rewards of our efforts,” said Surgical Services Director Brenda Munns, R.N. “Multidisciplinary programs such as LifeWings supports collaboration and communication among all disciplines throughout the hospital.”
The program was so well received by staff in Surgical Services, that other departments throughout the hospital also have implemented it including the Cardiac Cath Lab, Guardian Medical Transport, Guardian Air, Imaging, Laboratory, Radiation Oncology, Labor and Delivery, nursing units, and the Heart & Vascular Center of Northern Arizona.
“Continuous review of our processes and outcomes ensures the highest quality service to our patients,” said Bill Bradel, FMC President and CEO. “We continually look for opportunities to improve the quality, safety and efficiency of the services we provide. We are dedicated to providing the highest quality healthcare to our patients.”