UConn Medical School to Lead National Safety Training

The entrance to the Academic Building at UConn Health. (Tina Encarnacion/UConn Health Photo)
'To be recognized by our accrediting organization for leading the way and already demonstrating processes that promote patient safety and quality means a great deal to all of us,' said Dr. Kiki Nissen of UConn School of Medicine. (Tina Encarnacion/UConn Health Photo)

UConn School of Medicine was recently named one of nine “Pathway Leaders” for its work instilling a culture of safety in residency and fellow training, and will collaborate with the other leaders in the group on an effort to disseminate best practices nationwide.

As a “Pathway Leader,” the School of Medicine is part of the Patient Safety Collaborative formed by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) to create and test a new training framework over the next 18 months.

In addition to UConn School of Medicine, other institutions include Duke University Hospital, Indiana University School of Medicine, and the University of Pennsylvania Health System.

“It is a tremendous honor for UConn School of Medicine to have been chosen to participate in the ACGME’s Patient Safety Collaborative,” said Dr. Bruce T. Liang, dean of UConn’s medical school. “Our doctors Wendy Miller, Steven Angus, and Scott Allen have assembled an outstanding team of faculty, residents, nurses, and pharmacists who are excited to work together to implement a robust and sustainable program that will transform the education and training of our next generation of physicians.”

Patient safety is the first in a series of collaborations that will focus on optimizing the engagement of residents and fellows among the six focus areas of the ACGME’s Clinical Learning Environment Review Program. The other areas include health care quality, care transitions, supervision, fatigue management, and professionalism.

“To be recognized early in this process by our accrediting organization for leading the way and already demonstrating processes that promote patient safety and quality means a great deal to all of us,” said Dr. Kiki Nissen, associate dean for graduate medical education, who since 2007 has led UConn’s graduate medical education efforts and its activities at affiliated hospitals.

Since the ACGME announced its Clinical Learning Environment Review several years ago, UConn School of Medicine’s graduate medical education program and UConn John Dempsey Hospital have worked on patient safety initiatives to make the hospital a safer place for patients and an outstanding learning environment for UConn Health residents, fellows, and students.

The ACGME is a private, not-for-profit, professional organization responsible for the accreditation of approximately 10,700 residency and fellowship programs and the approximately 800 institutions that sponsor these programs in the United States.

Residency and fellowship programs educate approximately 130,000 resident and fellow physicians in 154 specialties and subspecialties in the U.S. The ACGME’s mission is to improve health care and population health by assessing and advancing the quality of resident physicians’ education through accreditation.

“I am extremely proud of the hard work and leadership of our graduate medical education team and our hospital paving the way forward to further advance training of our residents and fellows here at UConn Health and now around the country,” said Dr. Andy Agwunobi, CEO of UConn Health and its UConn John Dempsey Hospital.