Friday, October 23, 2009

Patient Safety Advocate Featured on Tonight's 20/20

Patient Safety Advocate, Alicia Cole, is featured on ABC's 20/20 tonight. Don't miss it -- she has an important story to tell:

Dear Fellow Advocates,

My story will be highlighted in the upcoming 20/20 show featuring the much anticipated new book 'SuperFreakonomics': Challenging Conventional Wisdom' There is a chapter in the book addressing hospital infections. Please be sure to watch if you can!

ABC 20/20
Friday, Oct 23, 2009 10:00 PM
Hand Washing Rate Low Among Doctors
Actress Nearly Died From 'Flesh-Eating Disease;'
'SuperFreakonomics' Authors Say Hospital Infections Are Preventable
When you are very sick, you go to the hospital to get better. But what if the hospital you choose actually makes you sicker, or even kills you?

Go to for a preview!

**I would love it if some of you would share your experiences in the comment section on the ABC website. People who come to the site and read the article need to know this is happening ALL OVER and everyone who gets an infection is not 'sick' - Many people are being infected following routine procedures due to carelessness.

Thank you very much....Alicia

Sunday, October 18, 2009


Our friends at IHI are looking for your input...

Don Berwick and Tom Nolan are asking for your input on how to design a low-cost, high-quality health care system for the future. To learn more, submit your ideas and stories, and engage in a conversation about health system transformation, click here.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

The Healing Garden

Becky Martins from Voice4Patients sent along this note about an important project. The Healing Garden is a living memorial dedicated to those patients and their loved ones who have suffered a medical error.

I became a patient safety advocate following my father's preventable death in 2000 and founded; a comprehensive web resource that provides patient safety information for consumers. Prior to that, I had been a long time advocate for end stage renal disease patients.

A number of years ago, there was a workgroup of consumers who had hoped to obtain the funding to buy land and have a memorial wall with the names of victims of medical error. As you can imagine, land in DC is expensive. Still, survivors wanted a way to honor their loved ones.

The living memorial garden has been created as a healing space to reflect upon and honor those whose journeys ended before we were ready to say our good-byes, as well for those who have experienced a medical trauma and live with the lingering emotional and physical effects. The garden includes a 40' diameter medicine wheel. There are four sections of flowers planted around the wheel in honor of the children, spouses, siblings and friends, and our elders. We had requests from those who work steadfastly everyday in the healthcare system, who also asked to be included to honor their commitment and dedication (and their hope and intention for a safer healthcare system). These champions are reflected in the walking path that leads into the garden area.

The healing space is located in midcoast Maine. There is no fee to have a flower planted, people only need to submit the information of who to plant the flower for and which section of the garden. Our family will be opening the garden to visitors in the Summer of 2010.

Thanks for posting the information,
Becky Martins

They will be planting bulbs this weekend. To make a donation or arrange for a flower to be planted, visit
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