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High Reliable Organization

Published May 4, 2015

As we move across the Northwest Washington Region to fully become a High Reliable Organization that places safety first, about 110 leaders — including 30 medical staff leaders — gathered to review the core practices of leadership that will be the foundation of the work ahead. With help from Health Performance Improvement experts and leaders from Providence Health & Services, we reviewed the evidence of safety and performance over the past two years. 

The following were agreed-upon practices that we have adopted, or will adopt, as leaders.

Continue with:

  • Follow reflections with a safety story at every meeting
  • Region-wide daily patient safety briefing
  • Daily huddles in every department/unit
  • Build on formal action plans

Start now with:

  • Place safety first in every decision
  • Stand up for those who speak up for safety
  • Provide 5:1 positive feedback, recognizing that performance is improved more through praise than through punishment
  • Round to influence: Identify a core value, inquire about how it can be met, and seek commitment to do so
  • Build and display unit-based, real-time safety, quality and service results

Plan to do the following soon:

  • Apply fair and just accountability principles across the region, including in performance improvement
  • Create and act on a constant Top 10 List of safety issues so that we will continue to be safer each day
  • Operate department/unit-based learning boards, which will be rolled out by our Operational Excellence Team over the coming months

We will work over the next few months to hardwire all of these practices as leaders. In addition, we will collaborate to build the curriculum that will bring principles of reliability and safety to every caregiver in NWR over the next two years.