The mission of Washington Advocates for Patient Safety (WAPS) is to promote accountability, quality, safety, and responsibility in patient care. As the voice of patients, their goals are to eliminate medical errors and harm and to save more lives.
Wrong surgery, wrong medication, serious bedsores… Unsafe practices and poor quality care kill more than 440,000 patients each year and waste billions of dollars every year. What information do you have about the safety of your hospital? What protections do you have if the hospital makes a mistake with you?
Consumers Union Documents
- State Medical Error Report Links
Reports from the states with laws requiring public reporting of medical errors.
- Consumers Union comments to National Quality Forum (NQF) on sociodemographic factors Source: Consumers Union (Wednesday April 16, 2014)
Consumers Union letter to National Quality Forum on its draft report “Risk Adjustment for Socioeconomic Status or Other Sociodemographic Factors” regarding risk-adjustment for some provider performance measures. CU’s primary concern is that such adjustments will hide differences in outcomes on quality and safety measures that exist when health care is delivered to patients from certain sociodemographic groups – for example, low-income, race, or age. Performance measures should reveal these differences.
- Video: Testimony of Consumers Union at Senate hearing on medical errors Source: Bernie Sanders (Friday July 18, 2014)
Watch Lisa McGiffert (Consumers Union Safe Patient Project Director) testify at a Senate hearing on medical errors, the third leading cause of death in the U.S.
- Consumers Union's Testimony at Senate Hearing: More Than 1,000 Preventable Deaths a Day Is Too Many Source: Consumers Union (Thursday July 17, 2014)
Lisa McGiffert, Campaign Director for Consumers Union’s Safe Patient Project, testified at a Senate HELP subcommittee hearing on medical errors, July 17, 2014.
- Patient Safety Advocates Urge the Creation of a National Patient Safety Board to Fight Medical Errors Source: Consumers Union (Tuesday July 15, 2014)
A network of patient safety advocates is urging Congress to take steps to improve patient safety by preventing hospital acquired infections and other preventable medical errors.
Consumers Union News Releases
- Patient Safety Advocates Urge the Creation of a National Patient Safety Board to Fight Medical Errors
Consumers Union’s Safe Patient Project to Highlight Need in Senate Testimony
- Consumers Union To Hold “Ending Medical Harm” Conference at Columbia University On November 6th
CONSUMERS UNION NEWS RELEASE For Immediate Release: Tuesday, October 29, 2013 Contact: Michael McCauley, firstname.lastname@example.org or 415-902-9537 (cell) or Ross Moonie, email@example.com or 917-690-5713 or Joe Duraes, firstname.lastname@example.org or 914-293-0100 Consumers Union To Hold “Ending Medical Harm” Conference at Columbia University On November 6 Conference To Focus on Tackling The 3rd Leading Cause of Death Continue Reading
- Ending Medical Harm: Tackling the 3rd leading cause of death in the U.S. Agenda
The Safe Patient Project is hosting a forum on medical harm at the Columbia School of Journalism Lecture Hall, November 6, 2013, 10:00 am -3:00.
- Medicare Study Shows Most Medical Errors Go Unreported
WASHINGTON, D.C. — A new study released today by the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) found that hospital employees are only reporting fourteen percent of all medical errors and usually don’t change their practices to prevent future harm to patients.
- HHS Announces National Campaign to Improve Patient Safety
CONSUMERS UNION SAFE PATIENT PROJECT — NEWS RELEASE Please Note: Consumers Union can connect reporters with patients who have suffered from hospital infections and other medical harm. To find out more, contact Michael McCauley at email@example.com For Immediate Release: Tuesday, April 12, 2011 Contact: Michael McCauley (firstname.lastname@example.org), 415-902-9537 (cell), 415-431-6747,
- 5 Steps For Care Coordination With Your Doctors
Without good coordination of care, risks for medical error rise significantly. Use these five Consumer Reports tips to make sure your doctors are doing the right thing.
- 11 tips for how to complain about your medical care
Check out Public Citizen’s fantastic guide for where to complain, written by Alan Levine, member of Consumers Union’s Safe Patient Network.
- Does your doctor wash their hands?
Check out this great new video about hand hygiene practices by health care workers created by the Alliance for Safety Awareness for Patients.
- 5 Reasons Why Duodenoscope Problems Matter
Duodenoscopes have contributed to deadly CRE infection outbreaks across the country. Learn how to protect yourself.
- Factors to Consider When Choosing a Doctor
What factors do you consider when choosing a doctor? Do you care more about having a doctor who communicates well or is it more important that your doctor has lots of experience and skills?
- To reduce malpractice litigation, stop making mistakes Source: The Hill (Monday March 16, 2015)
A new Public Citizen report about obstetric safety in the United States concludes the U.S. “has a poor childbirth safety record, likely due in part to the failure of obstetrics practitioners to develop and adhere to standardized practices.”
- Joan Rivers Lawsuit Will Focus on Informed Consent Source: Patient Safety and Quality Healthcare (Friday February 6, 2015)
A good document for patients to read before signing informed consent forms.
- The Public's Views on Medical Error in Massachusetts Source: Harvard School of Public Health (Sunday December 14, 2014)
The report commissioned by the Betsy Lehman Center for Patient Safety and Medical Error Reduction reveals the public’s ambivalence and confusion about reporting medical errors.
- Medical errors in Mass. still common, study finds Source: Boston Globe (Tuesday December 2, 2014)
Work done by the Betsy Lehman Center for Patient Safety reports that a quarter of MA residents had a medical error but many did not report the error because they didn’t think it would do any good.
- The Politics of Patient Harm: Medical Error and the Safest Congressional Districts
The Politics of Patient Harm: Medical Error and the Safest Congressional Districts poses the question of Congressional district safety not in regard to a representative’s political health in an election year, but in relation to the risk to physical health of constituents.
Research and Reports
- Mapping the Terrain of Graduate Medical Education: A Patient's Perspective, Helen Haskell, MA Source: Journal of Graduate Medical Education (Thursday October 2, 2014)
Helen Haskell (2014) Mapping the Terrain of Graduate Medical Education: A Patient’s Perspective. Journal of Graduate Medical Education: September 2014, Vol. 6, No. 3, pp. 437-459.
- What to Do if You Have a Concern about Quality in a Connecticut Hospital Source: Informed Patient Institute (Tuesday September 30, 2014)
This tip sheet explains steps you can take within the hospital to deal with your concerns about quality of care. It tells you how to contact the places that regulate or oversee hospitals.
- What to Do if You Have a Concern about Quality in a Connecticut Nursing Home Source: Informed Patient Institute (Tuesday September 30, 2014)
This tip sheet explains steps you can take within the nursing home to deal with your concerns about quality of care. It tells you how to contact places that regulate or oversee nursing homes.
- Health Watch USA Newsletter (September 2014) Source: Health Watch USA (Sunday September 7, 2014)
Patient safety news presented by KY-based Health Watch USA.
- Health Watch USA Newsletter (August 2014) Source: Health Watch USA (Tuesday August 5, 2014)
Patient safety news presented by KY-based Health Watch USA.