Results of the Patient Safety Authority’s 2018 Process Measures Survey


  • Michelle Bell Patient Safety Authority
  • Kim Liberatore Patient Safety Authority



Safety culture, process measures, safe surgery, infection prevention, infection control, behavioral health, medication safety


Improving patient safety is an ongoing journey that benefits from periodic assessment to recognize, reward, and redirect efforts. As an independent, nonregulatory state agency, the Patient Safety Authority (PSA) is uniquely positioned to both conduct comprehensive safety assessments and support improvement efforts. A process measures survey of acute care facilities was conducted in November and December 2018. The purpose was to inform the PSA’s strategic direction, provide benchmarking data to facilities, and understand the current patient safety landscape. The survey consisted of 48 questions divided into 10 domains: Behavioral Health, Falls, Health Information Technology, Improving Diagnosis, Infection Prevention and Control, Leadership, Medication Safety, Obstetrics, Safe Surgery, and Transition of Care. Each question asked respondents to report the degree to which a specific safety practice has been implemented at their facility.

In all, 153 unique facility responses with at least 30% of the survey questions completed were received and analyzed. According to respondents, the domains Safe Surgery, Infection Prevention and Control, and Obstetrics had the highest percentages of full implementation, while Behavioral Health, Medication Safety, and Improving Diagnosis had the lowest. Looking across domains, two new themes emerged: first, a high percentage of full implementation of safety practices to support communication about patient safety with frontline staff and second, a low percentage of full implementation of safety practices that promote patient engagement in organizational efforts to support safe patient care. These results will inform the PSA’s focus over the next several years.

In a couple of places the phrase is used “Improving patient safety is an endless journey….”. I worry that the use of “endless journey” may imply progress can never be made in patient safety and be self-defeating. I suggest changing it to something like, “In the ongoing journey to improve patient safety….”


Donabedian A. Evaluating the quality of medical care. Milbank Q. 2005;83(4):691-729.

The Joint Commission. National Patient Safety Goal for suicide prevention. R3 Rep. 2018;(18). Accessed January 9, 2019.

Images of people having different procedures done



How to Cite

Bell, M., & Liberatore, K. (2019). Results of the Patient Safety Authority’s 2018 Process Measures Survey. Patient Safety, 1(1), 42–51.



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