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10/27/2013 6:00 PM

​​Hon. Rona Ambrose helps to recognize the week

Canadian Patient Safety Week officially kicked off today with incredible support from all levels, including federal and provincial governments and over 2,000 Canadian healthcare organizations. Canadian Patient Safety Week is a national annual campaign started in 2005 to inspire extraordinary improvement in patient safety and quality. Working together, thousands of healthcare professionals, patients, and families help spread the message that good healthcare starts with good communication.

The Honourable Rona Ambrose, Minister of Health joined the Canadian Patient Safety Institute this morning to announce a new funding agreement and to officially open Canada’s Virtual Forum for Patient Safety and Quality Improvement. The federal Health Minister is joined by the provinces of Newfoundland and Labrador, Prince Edward Island and Saskatchewan in officially proclaiming October 28 to November 1, 2013 Canadian Patient Safety Week.

The Hon. Susan Sullivan, Minister of Health and Community Services, signed a proclamation to designate the week in Newfoundland and Labrador. The Minister was joined by patient safety ambassadors Vickie Kaminski, President and CEO, Eastern Health; Raeline McGrath, member, Patients for Patient Safety Canada; and Theresa Fillatre, Senior Policy Advisor, Canadian Patient Safety Institute. Hon. Sullivan reinforced the importance of good communication and the value of the patient and family perspective in advancing safe care.

Representing the voice of the patient, members of Patients for Patient Safety Canada (PFPSC) share their stories and lessons learned to improve quality and patient safety. Raeline McGrath reinforced how patients have helped to create awareness at many important levels, from the bedside to boardrooms. It is this support for and partnerships with patients and families that will inspire change and make care safer.

Raeline McGrath and Vickie Kaminski will join more than 40 diverse speakers in making presentations and members of PFPSC who will share their patient narratives during Canada`s Virtual Forum on Quality and Patient Safety, held in conjunction with Canadian Patient Safety Week. The five-day virtual Forum will be broadcast live to audiences around the world.

The theme for Canadian Patient Safety Week - ASK.LISTEN.TALK. - reinforces that good healthcare starts with a question, ASK; requires an open mind, LISTEN; and a responsive heart, TALK. To learn more about Canadian Patient Safety Week and Canada`s Forum on Patient Safety and Quality Improvement, visit