Letter From the Editor
I am delighted to share with you the inaugural issue of Patient Safety, the only journal that highlights the intersection of patient safety science and real human experience. We know that behind every event, every research project, every performance improvement initiative are people. People like you and me, those we care about, and those we care for. In each issue you will read not only about new insights and strategies to improve care but also stories that create a bridge between providers and patients.
It was also important to create a publication accessible to everyone—free from financial burdens for authors or subscribers and completely open access. Patient safety should not be a competition, and knowledge should be freely shared.
Our first patient commentary, written by Dwight McKay, describes the importance that everyone plays in safe care (Page 5). He describes his own experiences over the past 35 years and drives home the impact that a lack of health literacy can have. The painting featured on our back inside cover by artist Regina Holliday illustrates Joe Lavelle’s experience navigating healthcare. Each issue will include artwork from The Walking Gallery, a very visual reminder of why we do what we do.
From our cover: In a database analysis, lead author Matthew Grissinger discusses the occurrence of medication allergies and how systematic failures continue (Page 18). Michelle Bell and co-authors share findings from a statewide survey of best practice implementation at hospitals and ambulatory surgery facilities, which can help you identify areas in your own practice and organization that may not quite be hitting the mark (Page 42). Lynette Hathaway and co-authors explore the complications related to peripheral and central lines and remind that each has associated risks (Page 28). And in an interview with Pennsylvania Secretary of Health Rachel Levine, MD, she discusses one of the largest health crises that we face, the opioid epidemic (Page 60). Levine speaks frankly about its far-reaching effects and outlines the progress Pennsylvania has made to combat this nondiscriminating killer.
I hope these papers and stories, along with the many others in this issue, contribute to your awareness of the problems facing patients and providers today, and that you take something with you to help improve patient safety in this complex world of healthcare. If you have important work to share or stories to tell, please consider submitting your manuscripts at patientsafetyj.com.
See you again in December!