163-909 / The Patient, an “Active” Participant in Clinical Safety

GOP Information
Organisation sharing the GOP
Related practices from PaSQ database
Directorate-General of Ordination, and Health Regulation


Patient involvement
Patient empowerment
Patient involvement
Patient education
GOP Description
Implementation level
Clinical settings
Patients and general population in Catalonia Region (Autonomous Community: AC)
To improve patients’ safety culture by providing education on aspects related to the patient’s participation as an active agent in the safety of the healthcare process, through the patient associations that are members of the autonomous community’s (AC) Patient Advisory Council.
Patients’ Advisory Council was set up in the Autonomous Community (AC)
Patients and the general population AC
Although the patient is the central player in the healthcare process, the patient has traditionally been perceived as a passive agent who usually does not play an active role in improving his or her health care.
In 2013, a Patient Advisory Council was created in the AC, whose members are citizens representing patient associations, to act as an advisory and participatory body in the development of health policies, interfacing between the Ministry of Health and the patient associations within the AC’s health system.
Patient safety is a priority issue in most Western countries’ health policies. In the care process, an informed citizen (health culture) is a ‘safer’ citizen. The AC has encouraged patient involvement in patient safety and in improving the care process. Accordingly, educational material has been designed with the goal of improving patients’ safety culture in the care process, acting as active agents for safer care.
A systematic review has been performed of the scientific evidence and practical experience available with respect to improving patients’ safety culture. The aspects in which the patient’s active involvement is vital for preventing adverse events have been identified.
Steps have been taken to facilitate patient participation in Catalan health policy making. Health systems must refocus their policies, adopting a holistic approach to patient needs. In 2012, a standing patient participation and consultation body was created, with members representing patients, family and government. A channel for the Patient Advisory Council has been created:
A general briefing on patient safety targeting patients with advanced diseases has been organised.
A process has been developed so that the patient can share in decision making for those diseases identified as priorities.
A training course in bioethics has been developed for patients, with the cooperation of the Catalan Bioethics Committee.
Timeframe implementation
Annual training program (2014-2015 pilot), with different modules (drugs, infection-related health healthcare IRAS)
Implementation tools available
Online course and adapting it for meetings between the different centers of primary care and specialty care exposures to neighborhood associations, patients, etc.
Implementation cost
10.000 €
Method used to measure the results
Evaluation: the level of learning and satisfaction is measured using a survey.
Measurement of the number of participants attending the training courses.
Measurement of the number of actions implemented with respect to patients’ proposals for improving the health system.
Preparation of educational material for both classroom-based activities and using virtual campuses and new technologies, related to:
•    Navigating the health system (emergencies, primary care and specialist care).
•    Safe use of medication (information, storage, inventory control, polypharmacy, reconciliation, interactions, allergies and self-medication).
•    Infection prevention (hand hygiene, proper use of antibiotics, surgical wounds, vaccinations).
•    Preparing for a medical appointment (*).
•    Preparing for an operation (*).
•    Prevention of bed sores (*).
(*)http://www20.gencat.cat/portal/site/canalsalut/menuitem.8e66ed6321f723b4ba963bb4b0c0e1a0/?vgnextoid=7b0c67f94e1ae210VgnVCM2000009b0c1e0aRCRD&vgnextchannel;=7b0c67f94e1ae210VgnVCM2000009b0c1e0aRCRD&vgnextfmt;=defaultMeasures implemented in response to the needs proposed by patients, family members and patient associations. In 2013, the following measures have been implemented:
•    Braille card for people with visual impairment
•    ‘Care for me’ card for vulnerable people who need special care
•    Funding of audible blood glucose meters for diabetic patients with visual impairment
•    Adaptation of patient information for people with sensory impairments
Analysis of the results
The scheme is being introduced now and in October preliminary results will be available.
Implementation barriers
Did you find implementation barriers?
Please describe implementation barriers
Variability of different cultural types of the population.
Lack of safety culture and participation in making an assumption in many cases care assistance.
Limitation of economic resources.
Describe the strategies used to overcome the barriers (If needed)
Communication from patient organizations and patient advisory board. Expert Patient, training, communication, information, dissemination of patient safety actions.
Other information
Other information about the GOP that you would like to add (Link or attached document)
It is very important to establish communication flowing and understandable way between professionals and patients, as well as make enterder latter the existence of second victims.