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The Queen's Medical Center recently hosted a major conference, "Patient Safety: First Do No Harm? Now What?! Where the Rubber Meets the Road." The event was the fourth in a series of yearly Queen's conferences that address patient safety.

According to Della Lin, MD, who is executive director of Queen's Office of Continuing Education and course director for "Patient Safety," not nearly enough has been done to reduce medical errors. The driving force behind this year's conference is a concerted effort to actually do something to save lives and be at the point "where the rubber meets the road."

"Working harder is not the answer—it will not work," said keynote speaker Roger Resar, MD. "The key is to change the status quo and put in place better systems." A senior fellow at the Institute for Health Care Improvement (IHI), Dr. Resar was talking about very specific changes. The IHI has launched a national effort-called the 100K Lives Campaign-to save 100,000 lives in the next 18 months. At least 1,500 hospitals need to participate at the caregiver level.

Queen's has already signed on to the campaign, which will disseminate six powerful, proven methods that save lives. For complete details, visit www.ihi.org and click on the 100K Lives icon. These six specific changes could be just the beginning of a revolution in American health care. Actual case studies on a variety of specific changes presented by Dr. Resar proved that many lives can be saved and made a compelling argument for making immediate changes. Although the most obvious component of saving lives in health care is to give the best possible treatment to cure disease, saving someone's husband, wife, parent or child by avoiding error is just as priceless.

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