More than a decade ago, a team of Johns Hopkins safety and quality scholars began meeting in a small office building along the Baltimore waterfront to discuss their research ideas. Physicians, nurses, a psychologist, economists, public health researchers and others would describe their goals, and then see how they could help one another to achieve them. We called this approach the "mixing bowl," and it led to many published articles, not to mention numerous projects that saved patients' lives and reduced suffering.
As time went on, professionals from more and more disciplines and backgrounds recognized that they could contribute to the cause. Human-factors engineers, systems engineers, medical sociologists, clinical analytics experts, performance improvement specialists and others joined the team, which in 2011 became the Armstrong Institute for Patient Safety and Quality.
This deep commitment to working across disciplines is one of the things that distinguishes the Armstrong Institute. A few years ago, when we received a grant to redesign the intensive care unit, the project team brought together experts from a stunning 18 disciplines.
All of these professionals are helping to continuously evolve the science of preventing harm, improving patient outcomes and experiences and reducing waste in health care.
This blog is evolving as well. I will continue to post here, but the conversation will be enriched by colleagues from across the Armstrong Institute. They will offer their viewpoints, tell their stories and share resources and lessons, which will hopefully benefit health care professionals elsewhere.
Readers will find their perspectives refreshing and relevant. The Armstrong Institute is an amazing, innovative and impactful place to work, with much to share and much to learn. Among us are researchers who are grounded in the realities on the front lines of care. There are also clinicians who innovate at the unit or clinic level, then evaluate and publish our work with help from colleagues. All of us seek to find the sweet spot behind what is scientifically sound and what is feasible and practical to implement at the bedside. This integration between research and practice is one of the things that makes the institute such an exciting place.
We coordinate quality and safety improvement activities across Johns Hopkins Medicine, an integrated health system. But we also build skills for those who seek to make their patients safer and advance the science. Our researchers and clinicians lead national and international projects that aim to improve care.
So bid farewell to Points from Pronovost, and please welcome Voices for Safer Care. The Web address isn’t changing, nor is the mission. I hope you will read these insights, join the conversation and even suggest a topic or two that you would like to see addressed.