GE offers free assessment of Global Patient Safety Network

March 6, 2012 in Medical Technology

BARRINGTON, IL – As Patient Safety Awareness Week gets under way, GE Healthcare has announced a 90-day evaluation for its Global Patient Safety Network (GPSN) – an online community through which hospitals can collaborate with peers worldwide to improve safety.

The Global Patient Safety Network is operated under the GE Patient Safety Organization (GE PSO), which is designed to help healthcare professionals connect locally and globally with other providers with an eye towards enhancing the delivery of care.

Through this 90-day evaluation, which runs from April through June, hospitals will have the opportunity to collaborate with local and global peers and evaluate the GPSN without cost, officials say. Members will be able to connect across the global network as well as participate in specific activities with local peers.

Given the Department of Health and Human Services’ recent initiative to establish Hospital Engagement Networks (HENs), GE officials say the GPSN will provide a resource for providers to meet the needs of HENs.

[See also: HHS grants $218M to fight healthcare-acquired complications.]

“There has never been more focus, globally, on improving patient safety,” said Jeff Terry, general manager, operations optimization at GE Healthcare Performance Solutions. “The challenge for individual leaders is to find information that is relevant to their specific, nuanced, sub-specialty situation.”

The role of the Global Patient Safety Network, he added, “is to make it easier to find relevant content and to connect and share with global peers working on precisely the same issues. We believe the GPSN will help patient safety professionals accelerate their work to improve patient safety.”

The GPSN is a community of providers from around the world – US, UK and Canada – sharing knowledge about how to improve patient safety in a private, secure and near real-time environment. Within the larger GPSN community of hospitals and individuals, private sub-communities can also be established and “gardened” by leaders.

[See also: SAS helps GE's Patient Safety Organization minimize errors.]

GE plans to actively engage with participating hospitals during the evaluation to foster the design of the network with the goal of releasing a commercial offering in 2012, officials say.

The initiation of the GPSN evaluation follows a recent announcement from HHS that, as a part of the Partnership for Patients (P4P) initiative – a nationwide public-private collaboration to improve the quality, safety, and affordability of healthcare for all Americans – $218 million will be designated toward developing Hospital Engagement Networks.

Hospital Engagement Networks will help identify solutions already working to reduce healthcare acquired conditions, and work to spread them to other hospitals and healthcare providers. As an online, private patient safety community for the sharing of best practices and collaboration on patient safety initiatives, membership in the GPSN can help providers in meeting the goals of a P4P’s Health Engagement Network.

[See also: IOM calls for sweeping efforts on patient safety.]

“Patient safety is a serious issue, not just in the U.S. but all over the world, affecting countless patients,” said Yvonne Robertson, lead director, North West London Health Innovation and Education Cluster, an early adopter of the GPSN. “While communicating honestly with other providers about patient safety can be intimidating, today’s global healthcare climate requires directness, cooperation and transparency.”

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