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Health Ministry organizes Seminar on World Patient Safety Day

On the occasion of second World ‘Patient safety Day’, a webinar was organized by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare & National Health System Resource Centre, to give impetus to the endeavours directed towards improving the safety of patients as well as health care worker, since both are closely inter-linked.

The COVID-19 pandemic has unveiled huge challenges and risks, which front-line health workers face while caring for the patients. The theme for Patient safety this year is “Health Worker Safety: A Priority for Patient Safety” and the Slogan is “Safe health workers, Safe patients”

The Webinar was inaugurated by Sh. Rajesh Bhushan, Union Health Secretary MoHFW. In his address, the health secretary emphasised different steps, which the Government of India has taken for protection of hospital workers. Few of the such steps are ensuring availability of PPE and Masks, insurance coverage of Rs. 50.0 Lakhs, functional helpline, advisory on chemoprophylaxis, etc. The Health secretary also highlighted the importance of putting a transparent “Reporting and Learning System” in place.

Sh. Vikas Sheel, Joint Secretary (Policy) MoHFW provided an overview of different initiatives taken by the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare for promotion of the health quality and safety. Components of patient safety is deeply embedded in the National Quality Assurance Standards. Infection control is a major component, under the Kayakalp award scheme under the National Health Mission (NHM).

The webinar attracted a large audience with over 1200 participants including Mission Director (NHM) from the States, officials from the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Nodal Officers and other officials working in the field of Quality Assurance and patient safety at States and UTs. Representatives from academic institutions, development partners, NGOs, International Agencies, National Health Authority, NITI Aayog, also attended the webinar.

Eminent speakers included Dr. Akhil Sangal who spoke on “Trust in Healthcare”. Dr. R.D. Ravindran shared his experiences of “Reporting and learning from errors” at Arvind Eye care. Dr. Nikhil Prakash, International Quality and Safety Expert described the mechanisms and approaches of implementing patient safety initiatives at health facility. Dr. Sangeeta Sharma spoke on importance and approaches towards improving Medication Safety that is key to patient safety. Priorities in the paradigm of patient were elucidated by Dr. Subhrojyoti Bhowmick. Dr. Peter Lachman, CEO International Society for Quality in Healthcare (ISQua) correlated the patient safety measures with enhanced and desired outcomes. Ergonomics and human factors in patient safety during Covid were vividly explained by Dr. Tommaso Bellandi, International expert of Ergonomics and Health Safety.

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