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Pennsylvania Patient Safety Authority Hires Director of Educational Programs

The DEP will help the Authority improve patient safety in Pennsylvania by developing educational and training programs for healthcare providers

HARRISBURG, Pa., Oct. 30 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Pennsylvania Patient Safety Authority has hired a director of educational programs to help the Authority develop and implement educational curriculums and forums for healthcare providers based upon data received through the Pennsylvania Patient Safety Reporting System (PA-PSRS).

"This new position ties in perfectly with the mission of the Authority to educate and help healthcare providers learn from events happening in Pennsylvania healthcare facilities," Mike Doering, executive director of the Pennsylvania Patient Safety Authority said. "The educational aspect of what we do is paramount to prevent medical errors from occurring."

Franchesca (Fran) Charney, of Shermans Dale, Pennsylvania has been hired as the director of educational programs. Charney previously worked as a registered nurse at Holy Spirit Health System in Camp Hill, Pennsylvania where she held many positions including most recently its patient safety officer and risk management director. She is also president of the American Society for Healthcare Risk Management's (ASHRM) Central Pennsylvania Chapter and a fellow with the Patient Safety Leadership Fellowship.

Charney's other accomplishments include receiving the distinguished honor of 40 under 40 award in 1998 from the Central Pennsylvania Business Journal. She received the award for her work in developing and marketing a device that was used in various laparoscopic procedures. Charney has also participated in the Colors of Patient Safety Task Force that is responsible for mobilizing the statewide effort to standardize color-coded wristbands in Pennsylvania after a near miss was reported to the Authority and published in the Patient Safety Advisory. Since then, several other states have modeled their standardization protocols after Pennsylvania's. The Color-Coded Wristband Task Force received two Hospital and Healthsystem Achievement Awards in 2007 for patient safety and innovation of the project.

Along with establishing education and training materials for healthcare facilities, Charney will oversee the Patient Safety Liaison (PSL) program recently begun at the Authority. The program is currently being developed in the Northeast region of Pennsylvania with plans to expand throughout the state. The PSL works directly with healthcare providers in their designated regions to help implement best practice protocols and other information provided by the data published in Patient Safety Advisories.

"Fran has worked in the healthcare arena for over twenty-five years and brings with her a wealth of knowledge in patient safety education that will enable us to increase our efforts in assisting Pennsylvania healthcare facilities to reduce medical errors," Doering said. "Her previous experience as a patient safety officer and risk manager provides further insight into what our patient safety liaisons need to do to help other patient safety officers overcome barriers that may exist in their facilities for improving the culture of safety."

Doering said specifically among other duties the Director of Educational Programs will: identify and develop patient safety training and education needs of the healthcare community in Pennsylvania; work with other patient safety focused entities to develop education programs; help develop the Authority's patient safety liaison program; manage the Authority's regional patient safety liaisons; and help healthcare facility patient safety officers utilize the resources of the Authority to further patient safety in their institutions.

"The patient safety liaison program is a new program that will need a strong leader to make it work as effectively and efficiently as possible," Doering said. "Fran fits the bill in regard to experience and enthusiasm that will be needed to make the program a success.

"Our patient safety liaison has gone into twenty facilities in the Northeast and is obtaining valuable feedback from them as to what they need from us to make their institutions safer. Fran will help us take that information to the next level of education for improved patient safety," Doering added.

For more information about the Pennsylvania Patient Safety Authority go to

SOURCE Pennsylvania Patient Safety Authority
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