Are We Safe?

Sometimes our health journey seems fraught with peril. So much can go wrong. Unexpected danger lurks around every corner. Yet, team members (caregivers, loved ones, professionals) accompanying us on our health journey all seek a safe ride for us and themselves. Safety is complicated. It begs many questions.

  • What kind of safety – emotional, physical, or cultural? Personal, team or organizational safety? Absence of error, mishap or tragedy?
  • What about the dynamic tension between risk and rights? We could feel absolutely safe with a trusted Big Sister always watching and protecting. How much of our human rights would we give up for that absolute safety?
  • What role do we ePatient drivers play in our own safety? What role do our leaders organizations play in our safety?
  • How is safety demonstrated? Surely part of safety is perception. 
 Some assorted thoughts about safety:
  • Safety exists in a cultural context. Community and organization leaders set the tone: Transparency, trust, reflection, dialog about safety and its many facets.
  • Individuals play a role in selecting, electing, and supporting leaders and participating in dialog, reflection, and adaptation.
  • Safety is elusive and dynamic. Safe one minute does not necessarily lead to safety the next. Nimble teams and organizations learn quickly from experience and reflection about safety leading to safer habits and practices.
  • Individuals bring history and experience to their sense of emotional safety. Abuse, discrimination, tragedy can poison the growth of inner feelings of safety and trust and stunt resiliency and the ability to dialog, reflect, and adapt.
  • A trusted health partner who champions our personal health journey can increase our safety while we are exposed and vulnerable.
  • Nothing impacts the perception of safety more than trust – walking the talk.
See MITSS (Medically Induced Trauma Support Services) – one of the best sources of dialog about safety. Another is PSQH (Patient Safety Quality in Healthcare)

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