Consumers Union’s “Safe Patient Project” seeks to eliminate medical harm in our health care system through public disclosure of health care outcomes (such as hospital-acquired infection rates and incidents of medical errors) and information about health care providers (such as complaints against and license violations of physicians and hospitals). The campaign also works to improve drug safety by ensuring that consumers have full information about prescription drugs (such as in direct-to-consumer ads and access to clinical trial results), by strengthening oversight of the FDA, and by ending practices that create conflicts of interest (such as drug company gifts to doctors).
Lisa McGiffert, Director, Safe Patient Project and Stop Hospital Infections Campaign
Lisa McGiffert directs the Safe Patient Project. This highly successful campaign has initiated infection-reporting legislation in almost every state, 27 of which and the District of Columbia now have passed into law; drafted model legislation; and raised public awareness on preventing medical harm.
Lisa routinely speaks as the consumer voice on patient safety issues at conferences and with the media. She coordinates a network of local advocates who work together on patient safety issues. Lisa serves as the consumer liaison to the CDC Healthcare Infection Control Practices Advisory Committee, and as consumer representative on the National Quality Forum Healthcare-associated Infections Steering Committee, the Texas Health Care Associated Infections Advisory Panel, and the California Department of Health Services Healthcare-associated Infections Advisory Working Group. For more than 20 years, as a Senior Policy Analyst for Consumers Union and as legislative coordinator for the Texas Senate Committee on Health and Human Services, Lisa has worked on a broad array of health care policy issues in Texas and nationally, including health care quality, health insurance, and access to care.
Suzanne Henry, Policy Analyst, Safe Patient Project and Hospital Infections Campaign
Suzanne Henry is the Safe Patient Project campaign Policy Analyst. She is responsible for doing research and tracking state legislation on patient safety issues, including drug safety, medical errors, doctor accountability and hospital infections. She also has given testimony at state legislative hearings.
Suzanne was previously the campaign organizer for the www.stophospitalinfections.org campaign and was responsible for communicating and coordinating with state activists on legislative lobbying and media outreach. The multi-state project seeks to reduce hospital-acquired infections by raising public awareness and requiring public disclosure of hospital infection rates. The campaign has helped initiated infection reporting legislation in 43 states, 27 of which now have passed into law.
Prior to joining the Safe Patient Project Suzanne worked on insurance and low income housing policy issues.
Daniela Nuñez, Grassroots Organizer
Daniela Nuñez is a Patient Safety Grassroots Organizer working in CU’s Austin office. She communicates with activists, volunteers, and organizations across the country working for a safer, higher quality health care system. She is also the lead blogger for “The Dirty Truth,” CU’s patient safety blog. Since she joined CU in November 2007, Daniela has organized media events for CU’s Cover America Tour and has played an active role in CU’s social networking team.
Daniela developed a passion for organizing while studying at the University of Notre Dame. She organized on-campus animal rights campaigns and volunteered for several other social justice and political campaigns over four years. During her summers home in Austin, TX, Daniela organized for the Save Our Springs Alliance, advocating for the protection of Barton Springs and the Edwards Aquifer. She interned for two U.S. Congressional lawmakers: Representative Lloyd Doggett (TX) and Senator Evan Bayh (IN). In 2007, Daniela earned a B.A. in Political Science and English.
A native of Austin, TX, Daniela enjoys local activism, live music, film, blogs and ingenious social networks.
Michael McCauley, Media Director
Michael has been on Consumers Union’s staff since January 2000. He works out of Consumers Union’s west coast office in San Francisco and is currently the Media Director for CU’s Safe Patient Project and Financial Services Campaigns. Prior to joining CU, Michael was the Communications Director for Greenbelt Alliance, a San Francisco Bay Area land conservation and urban planning nonprofit. Before moving to California, Michael was the Media Director for Trial Lawyers for Public Justice and Research Director for Public Citizen’s Congress Watch, both in Washington, D.C. He has over 20 years of experience as a public interest advocate, primarily in media relations.