Telluride — “Old West” Town Embraces Patient Safety

Screen Shot 2013-06-02 at 10.45.44 PMFirst posted on Educate the Young, June 3rd, 2013

June has always been a very exciting month for me. For the last eight years, Tim McDonald and I have journeyed west to Telluride, CO, a beautiful mountain town known by many for its skiing than summer activities. For those outside CO, Telluride may be one of the best kept secrets around. We often choose to take the scenic six hour journey from the Denver airport to Telluride each June, making our way up the mountain to run our annual Telluride Patient Safety Roundtable and Summer Camps, and to be reminded of the power of the peaceful surroundings we will be teaching in for the next 2-3 weeks. Over the years, people have asked me “Why Telluride?” My response has always been the same – “Why not?”  Be it the “old west feel” of the town, or the magic that happens at an elevation of 9,600 feet, Telluride has always been a learning mecca for us.

Nana Naisbitt, Executive Director of Telluride Scientific Research Center (TSRC) and her son Rory, have been wonderful to work with through the years. TSRC hosts about 24 scientific programs each summer. The smaller, roundtable format we use is designed to foster creative thought and consensus building through lively conversation in a relaxed and informal setting. This format attracts patient safety leaders from around the world to Telluride each summer to “break bread” and share ideas on current issues and challenges. Because of this unique venue, a lot of discovery and sharing of ideas happen on the walking paths, hiking on the mountain trails, in a coffee shop, or over a glass of wine.

Screen Shot 2013-06-02 at 10.46.03 PMThrough the generous support of The Doctors Company Foundation (TDCF), COPIC, Committee of Interns and Residents (CIR), Mag Mutual and MedStar Health, over 100 health science students and resident physician leaders will be attending one of three, week-long Telluride Patient Safety Summer Camps this summer. The first two weeks will be in Telluride and a third week in Washington DC later this summer. Numerous health science students and resident physician leaders from across the country applied for one of the summer camp opportunities.

Our objectives for the Patient Safety Summer Camps are the same each year:

  1. To identify and help develop future healthcare leaders and champions in patient safety, transparency and open, honest and professional communication between patients, families and caregivers.
  2. To develop a growing number of Patient Safety Summer Camp alumni that serve as role models and mentors to (a) health science students and resident physicians at their respective medical centers and health systems, and (b) health science students and resident physicians enrolled in future Patient Safety Summer Camps.
  3. To create a social networking community where Patient Safety Summer Camp health science students, resident physicians and past alumni can interact with international leaders in patient safety, education and patient advocacy on issues pertaining to patient safety, transparency and open, honest and professional communication between patients, families and caregivers.
  4. To help create risk reduction and quality improvement collaborative projects between Patient Safety Summer Camp alumni, faculty and patient advocates that are implemented within the Patient Safety Summer Camp alum’s institution and beyond.

Screen Shot 2013-06-02 at 10.46.14 PMNext Monday, many wonderful and highly committed patient safety advocates and leaders will once again convene in Telluride to continue our mission of “Educating the Young”. The first week, we will have twenty-nine resident physicians, future physician leaders from across the country, immersed in learning about transparency, patient safety, and patient partnership. It truly is an amazing experience that always leaves me energized for months to follow.

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Patient-centered Care Education (Shared Decision Making)

Our second day in Telluride finished with the residents watching the award-winning film The Faces of Medical Error…From Tears to Transparency: The Story of Michael Skolnik”. The educational film addresses the importance of informed consent versus shared decision-making conversations – an important aspect of open and honest communication in healthcare that is still lacking in many health systems. The film asks the question – Can a conversation change an outcome? Can a conversation save a life?”

After the film, the residents engaged in a two-hour conversation with faculty and safety leaders on issues related to informed consent and shared decision making. When Paul Levy asked the residents how much training they get on this topic, every resident in the room acknowledged this three-hour session on informed consent/shared decision making was more education than they have received during their entire medical school and residency training to date. A sad commentary on the current state of medical education in areas of patient centered care.

Welcome 2012 Telluride Scholars

Eighth Annual Telluride Patient Safety Roundtables and Summer Camps

June 11th – June 14th, 2012

June 18th – June 21st, 2012

June 25th – June 28th, 2012

Over the last seven years, interprofessional leaders from the AMA, ANA, Joint Commission, NBME, ACGME, Lucian Leape Institute, patient safety, informatics, simulation and health science education have come together with students, resident physicians and patient advocates in beautiful Telluride, Colorado to address current patient safety educational issues.

Through the generous support of The Doctors Company Foundation, COPIC, the Committee of Interns and Residents, MedStar Health and the UIC Institute for Patient Safety Excellence, we will have three separate weeks of patient safety summer camps for residents and students. These organizations have provided funding that allows us to bring twenty resident physicians and forty-five medical students to Telluride in 2012, to engage with leaders and educators in patient safety. The students and resident physicians from across the country applied for these scholarships, and were selected because of their extensive leadership experience and passion for patient safety.

The theme of our work this year which starts tomorrow will be “The Power of Change Agents: Teaching Caregivers Effective Communication Skills to Overcome the Multiple Barriers to Patient Safety and Transparency”. Each week will focus on issues and barriers related to open, honest and professional communication between caregivers, patients and family members when unanticipated outcomes occur.

Over the next three weeks, we will be sharing the learning, consensus and reflections that come for our daily work and activities. We hope you find it educating and enlightening.

Telluride Patient Safety Roundtable and Summer Camp Vision:

To create an annual patient safety retreat and educational summer camp where experts in patient safety and health science education come together with patient advocates and healthcare trainees in a relaxed and informal setting to discuss, develop and refine health science education that supports a culture of patient safety, transparency and optimal outcomes in patient care.

Program Leaders: David Mayer MD and Tim McDonald MD JD

Telluride Roundtable and Summer Camp Objectives:

By the end of the Patient Safety Summer Camp, participants will be able to:

1.)    Describe in-depth at least three reasons why open, honest and professional communication between caregivers, patients and family members is critical to the patient safety, transparency and reducing risk in healthcare.

2.)    Utilize effective tools and strategies to lead change specific to reducing patient harm and improving communication between caregivers and their patients.

3.)    Implement, lead and successfully complete a Safety/QI project at their institution over the next twelve months.

Award winning film “The Story of Michael Skolnik” closes Day #2 at Telluride Patient Safety Roundtable

Dr. Lucian Leape opened day #2 at the Seventh Annual Telluride Patient Safety Educational Roundtable with a call for the return of “Joy and Meaning in Healthcare Work”. After Dr. Leape’s motivating address, Roundtable attendees spent considerable time in small group breakouts building consensus on ways to address dispruptive caregivers, humiliation, bullying and harassment in healthcare – all critical issues that significantly contirbute to increased patient risk and medical errors. Patient safety experts attending the Roundtable all agreed that efforts to solve the patient safery crisis will not occur until unprofessional behaviors by some caregivers is rectified.

The second day closed with all Roundtable attendees and medical students watching the award-winning film The Faces of Medical Error…From Tears to Transparency: The Story of Michael Skolnik”. The educational film discusses the importance of shared decision-making – an important aspect of open nd honest communication in healthcare that is still lacking in many health systems. Patty Skolnik, Michael’s mother,  led the interactive discussions that followed. The film asks the question – Can a conversation save a life?”

“The Faces of Medical Error from Tears to Transparency” film kicks off Telluride Patient Safety Roundtable

The patient safety film “The Faces of Medical Error from Tears to Transparency…The Story of Lewis Blackman” was shown this morning to international patient safety leaders, patient advocates, medical educators and 20 medical student leaders from across the US. The award winning film kicked off the Seventh Annual Telluride Patient Safety Educaitonal Roundtable. This years Roundtable continues the discussions and consensus building from the previous two years on the need for Open, Honest and Professional Communication between caregivers and patients/families related to unanticipated patient care outcomes. Helen Haskell, the mother of Lewis Blackman, along with Tim McDonald and Dave Mayer led interactive discussions with attendees after the film on (1) why honest communication in healthcare has been lacking and (2) the positive changes that have been observed by health sytems who have adopted a culture of open, honest and professional communication after unanticipated outcomes occur.  Rick Boothman from the University of Michigan will join Tim McDonald in facilitating the afternoon’s open and honest communication educational session on “Where we are and how we got here”.

Leaders and Students arriving in Telluride today

The Seventh Annual Telluride Patient Safety Educational Roundtable is set to begin tomorrow. Patient safety leaders, patient advocates and educators are arriving from around the world to enage in discussions related to open, honest and professional communication between caregivers when an unanticipated outcome occurs. This year, thanks to the generous support of The Doctors Company Foundation, 20 student leaders from medical schools across the US will be participating and contributing to our important conversations and consensus building this week. Too often, when outcomes from our care do not meet our intended expectations, caregivers struggle with the ensuing open, honest and professional dialouge that needs to occur to start the healing and learning.  Our hope is to offer solutions to the current barriers that hinder these critical conversations.

Should be a great week.

Seventh Annual Telluride Patient Safety Educational Roundtable

Seventh Annual Telluride Patient Safety Educational Roundtable

June 13th – June 16th, 2011

Over the last six years, interprofessional leaders from the AMA, ANA, Joint Commission, NBME, ACGME, Lucian Leape Institute, patient safety, informatics, simulation and health science education have come together with patients and patient advocates in beautiful Telluride, Colorado to address current patient safety educational issues.

Through the generous support of The Doctors Company Foundation, we will be bringing twenty medical student leaders from across the country to Telluride this year to engage with leaders and educators in patient safety for our Seventh Annual Telluride Patient Safety Educational Roundtable addressing “Dilemmas Surrounding Medical Errors and Adverse Events: Teaching Caregivers Effective Communication Skills to Overcome the Multiple Barriers to Transparency”. Our Roundtable this year focuses on issues and barriers related to open, honest and professional communication between caregivers when unanticipated adverse events occur.

Telluride Patient Safety Roundtable Vision:

To create an annual one-week retreat and medical student summer camp where experts in patient safety and health science education come together with patients and consumers in a relaxed and informal setting to discuss, develop and refine health science education that supports a culture of patient safety, transparency and optimal outcomes in patient care.

Program Leaders: David Mayer MD, Tim McDonald MD JD, Rick Boothman JD

Telluride Student Summer Camp Objectives:

  1. Development of future medical student champions in patient safety, risk reduction and open, honest and professional communication between patients, families and caregivers.
  2. Development of student camp alumni that serve as mentors to students enrolled in future patient safety student camps.
  3. Collaborative medical student/faculty/patient advocate patient safety projects.
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