Letter From the Editor
What a difference three months makes. Since the last issue of Patient Safety, our worlds have been turned upside down and inside out. We’ve been called to evaluate what matters most in both our personal and professional lives; we’ve been thrust into unplanned roles; and, like so many of you, the staff at the Patient Safety Authority (PSA) and their families have been directly affected by an invisible enemy. Most recently, we’ve watched our nation react to an unconscionable act of hatred—we’ve cried, we’ve cursed, and we’ve watched our cities burn. Through all of this, healthcare workers showed up at hospitals, nursing homes, private homes, and emergency scenes. They showed up and they continue to show up. We dedicate this issue to our healthcare heroes. We appreciate you.
From our cover feature, SaraKay Smullens, social worker and bestselling author, and Dr. Stanton Smullens, board chair of the PSA, sat down and talked about clinician burnout, depression, and COVID-19’s effect on an already growing crisis. Their collective personal experiences with these issues bring the reader into their space as they share their stories and offer solutions that so many of us can use right now.
Also, in this issue: an aggregate look at data submitted to the Pennsylvania Patient Safety Reporting System (PA-PSRS). While our dedicated team of patient safety analysts brings you articles each quarter that highlight findings from PA-PSRS and issues advisement for improvement, once a year we provide broad analysis of this data to help inform decision making at the local and statewide levels. Some highlights from this year include distribution of reports by harm score, breakdown of top reported events, and events by care area. We also include articles that highlight COVID-19–related event reports, pediatric vaccine safety, overdoses in the hospital setting, denture impactions, and more.
Finally, thank you to all the presenters and poster authors who contributed wonderful information to what would have been our third Pennsylvania Patient Safety Symposium (P2S2). In lieu of the canceled event, some of our presenters agreed to provide their sessions in webinar format over the next few months. All PSA webinars are provided at no charge to participants. In addition, posters that were accepted for the symposium are showcased in this issue and upcoming issues, so be sure to check them out.
If you have research, improvement initiatives, or perspectives that contribute to our collective knowledge, please consider submitting your next manuscript to Patient Safety at patientsafetyj.com.
Stay safe for you, for those you love, and for those who show up for all of us!