Embedding Safety Culture Using Operational Excellence Principles

Improving patient safety — reducing medical errors — requires deep-rooted organizational change. But, organizational change is tricky; failure rates range from 60 to 90%. One evidence-based approach to changing culture — organizational culture or its byproduct, safety culture — is to couple safety culture interventions with an operational excellence strategy that addresses both the leadership and structural drivers to change. Using operational excellence principles as primary and secondary embedding mechanisms, strategic leaders can sustain and embed safety culture across the enterprise.