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World Health Organization (WHO) Collaborating Centres are institutions designated by the WHO Director General to carry out activities in support of WHO and to form part of an international collaborative network.

This prestigious designation begins with an invitation from WHO, and is based on a history of collaboration and results. The WHO Patient Safety and Quality Improvement unit at WHO-headquarters in Geneva encouraged the Canadian Patient Safety Institute (CPSI) to apply for a designation in patient safety and patient engagement. The invitation acknowledges a strong history of collaboration and successes which include, among many others, the Global Patient Safety Alerts and Patients for Patient Safety Canada.

At the time of the designation, CPSI was the only Canadian organization with a focus on patient safety and the only WHO Collaborating Centre in the world focused on patient engagement.