MedStar Health Hosts International Patient Safety Symposium

MedStar Health’s National Center for Human Factors in Healthcare is hosting an international symposium on advancements in the science of engineering a safe patient care environment and applied best practices. The 2013 International Symposium on Human Factors & Ergonomics in Health Care will be held March 10-13 at the Baltimore Marriott Waterfront Hotel and is presented by the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society (HFES). The conference is designed to further the collaboration between healthcare leaders and safety scientists working in the field of human factors.

MedStar is holding a pre-conference workshop to share new ways of thinking about patient safety and to provide healthcare providers with practical tools for investigating human factors that lead to safety issues, which can be harmful or even deadly.

Patient safety is at the heart of MedStar, the largest health system in Maryland and the Washington, D.C., region. Experts from the National Center for Human Factors in Healthcare work side-by-side with care providers, clinical researchers and leadership teams in the largest human factors enterprise of its kind in the U.S. Their focus is improving the design of work processes, medical devices and health information technology, and sharing their findings to improve healthcare delivery systems.

The international symposium’s opening session is entitled “The Seven Practices of Highly Resonant Operating Room Teams: Unlocking the Creative Potential of Human Factors,” by internationally respected organizational change expert and cardiac surgeon Ross Ungerleider, MD. The closing session is “The FDA’s Perspective on Preventing Medication Errors: The Role of Human Factors,” by Kellie Taylor, PharmD, an expert in error prevention from the federal Office of Surveillance and Epidemiology. Presentations throughout the conference include a focus on medical device design, healthcare information technology, and patient and provider safety. The 2012 international symposium drew more than 400 attendees.

About the National Center for Human Factors in Healthcare

Located in Washington, D.C., the National Center for Human Factors in Healthcare brings together human factors engineers, industrial systems engineers, industrial/organizational psychologists, usability specialists, and clinicians to conduct safety science and applied research to improve healthcare quality, efficiency, reliability and safety. As part of the MedStar Institute for Innovation (MI2) and the MedStar Health Research Institute, the center’s home and “research lab” is MedStar Health. The center benefits from established collaborations with many academic institutions and hospital systems, including the NIH-sponsored Georgetown-Howard Universities Center for Clinical and Translational Science (CTSA) research collaborative. For more information, visit

About MedStar Health

MedStar Health combines the best aspects of academic medicine, research and innovation with a complete spectrum of clinical services to advance patient care. As the largest healthcare provider in Maryland and the Washington, D.C., region, MedStar’s 10 hospitals, the MedStar Health Research Institute and a comprehensive scope of health-related organizations are recognized regionally and nationally for excellence in medical care. MedStar has one of the largest graduate medical education programs in the country, training more than 1,100 medical residents annually, and is the medical education and clinical partner of Georgetown University. MedStar Health is a $4.5 billion not-for-profit, regional healthcare system based in Columbia, Maryland, and one of the largest employers in the region. Our almost 30,000 associates and 6,000 affiliated physicians all support MedStar Health’s Patient First philosophy that combines care, compassion and clinical excellence with an emphasis on customer service. For more information, visit

About the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society

The Human Factors and Ergonomics Society (HFES) is the world’s largest nonprofit individual-member multidisciplinary scientific association for human factors/ergonomics professionals, with more than 4,600 members globally. HFES members include psychologists and other scientists, designers and engineers, all of whom have a common interest in designing systems to be safe and effective for the people who operate and maintain them. For more information, visit