The Collaborative for Accountability and Improvement (the Collaborative) is a newly-formed organization with the goal of supporting broader implementation of communication and resolution programs (CRPs). In February, the Collaborative hosted its first "CRP Leadership Retreat," a two-day workshop for leaders of institutions that are poised to adopt the CRP model and looking to build an implementation strategy. The retreat was was held with co-sponsorship from the Collaborative and the National Patient Safety Foundation, and was hosted by the Stanford Risk Authority in Palo Alto. The course faculty were Rick Boothman (U. Michigan), Jeff Driver (Stanford Risk Authority), Tom Gallagher (U. Washington), Tim McDonald (Sidra Medical Center, Qatar), and myself.
The retreat confirmed that there is a great deal of interest nationally in CRPs. The conference was overbooked with 114 attendees, filling every seat of our conference room. Many institutions brought a team of several leaders to participate. The curriculum covered an overview of CRPs, as well as practical advice from those who have implemented these programs. Structured role plays with professional actors were conducted to simulate the various stages of communication in relation to an adverse event, including initial communication before facts are known, communication of conclusions of root cause analysis, and conversation about resolution and compensation.
The most powerful remarks of the event were delivered by Leilani Schweitzer, Assistant Vice President for Communication & Resolution, Stanford Risk Authority. Leilani described her own journey with communication and resolution following the death of her young son from medical error, and how this informs her current work as an advocate for patients at Stanford who have experienced harm.
Reviews from participants in the workshop have been highly favorable, and another workshop is in the planning stages for this fall, likely to be held on the East Coast.
Ken Sands, MD, MPH