Zero preventable deaths in hospitals by 2020 – The ESA commitment to Patient Safety improvement

Zero preventable deaths in hospitals by 2020 – The ESA commitment to Patient Safety improvement

  • Issue 75

Stefan De Hert, ESA President

The Patient Safety Movement Foundation believes that “reaching ZERO preventable deaths in hospitals by 2020 (0X2020) is not only the right goal, but an attainable one with the right people, ideas, and technology. Many pieces of the puzzle already exist. Solving this problem is a matter of connecting the dots.”

The European Society of Anaesthesiology (ESA) has decided to join forces with the Patient Safety Movement Foundation (PSMF) and announced ESA’s commitment at the 5thAnnual World Patient Safety, Science & Technology Summit in 2017:

  1. Spreading the PSMF’s mission to ESA members and national societies of Anaesthesiologists.
  2. Providing tools, including scientific and political support, to implement the “Helsinki Declaration on Patient Safety in Anaesthesiology” in all European anaesthesiology departments and monitor the implementation and progression.
  3. Annually disseminating Actionable Patient Safety Solutions (APSS) to ESA members.
  4. Asking members working in hospitals to implement APSS or their own process to eliminate preventable deaths and make commitments to action to reduce preventable patient deaths in hospitals.

This year’s 6thAnnual Summit in London, England, was co-convened with PSMF and ESA. You can find more details and also the link to the video library on

While the PSMF originated in the United States, it is rapidly spreading internationally due to its importance and global impact. The Movement involves all stakeholders of the healthcare ecosystem, including health care personnel, patients and relatives, politicians and policy makers, hospital leaders, healthcare technology companies, and many other committed partners.

Together, they are able to identify the problems and address new challenges through the Actionable Patient Safety Solutions (APSS). Each APSS is developed by a workgroup comprised of patient safety experts, healthcare technology professionals, hospital leaders, and patient advocates.

For the time being, there are 16 challenges and 30 solutions to overcome some of the leading patient safety challenges facing hospitals today (you can find out more information about each challenge by clicking on its title).

Challenge 1: Creating a Culture of Safety
Challenge 2: Healthcare-associated Infections (HAIs)
Challenge 3: Medications
Challenge 4: Failure to Rescue: Monitoring for Opioid Induced Respiratory Depression
Challenge 5: Anemia & Transfusions
Challenge 6: Hand-off Communications
Challenge 7: Neonatal Safety
Challenge 8: Airway Safety
Challenge 9: Early Detection & Treatment of Sepsis
Challenge 10: Prevention & Resuscitation of In-hospital Cardiac Arrest
Challenge 11: Optimizing Obstetric Safety
Challenge 12: Embolic Events
Challenge 13: Mental Health
Challenge 14: Falls & Fall Prevention
Challenge 15: Nasogastric Feeding & Drainage Tube Placement & Verification
Challenge 16: Person & Family Engagement