American Institutes for Research Wins Prestigious SIOP Award for Efforts to Reduce Medical Errors

Nov 02, 2006, 00:00 ET from American Institutes for Research

    WASHINGTON, Nov. 2 /PRNewswire/ -- Researchers for American Institutes
 for Research (AIR) have won the prestigious 2007 M. Scott Myers Award for
 Applied Research in the Workplace, given by the Society for Industrial and
 Organizational Psychology (SIOP).
     The award recognizes AIR's work in developing TeamSTEPPS (Team
 Strategies and Tools to Enhance Patient Safety) in an effort to improve
 patient safety and reduce medical errors. The work was conducted for the
 federal Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) and the TRICARE
 Management Activity of the Department of Defense.
     The project developed an evidence-based team training program for
 health care professionals to improve communication and coordination in an
 effort to reduce medical error. The training program is now being published
 by AHRQ as the federal standard for team training programs.
     "Medical errors are increasing problems that all too often are caused
 by human mistakes rather than technical malfunctions," said David Baker, an
 AIR principal research scientist who has been leading the project. "The
 TeamSTEPPS approach has produced impressive results that reverse this
     The award will be presented at the 2007 SIOP Conference in New York in
 April. It is given to researchers in recognition of a "project or product
 representing an outstanding example of the practice of industrial and
 organizational psychology in the workplace." In addition to Baker, members
 of the AIR team include: Alexander Alonso, Rachel Day, Amy Holtzman, Laura
 Steighner, and Catherine Porter.
     Other team members include: Eduardo Salas, professor, University of
 Central Florida; Heidi King, program manager, Healthcare Team Coordination
 Program, Department of Defense, TriCARE Management Activity; James Battles,
 senior research fellow, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; and
 Paul Barach, associate professor, University of Miami School of Medicine.
     The TeamSTEPPS program is a three-phased process aimed at creating a
 culture of safety and teaching teamwork. The process includes a
 pre-training assessment for site readiness, training for on-site trainers
 and in-service personnel, and implementation and sustainment for all
     In addition to developing core team skills, the program provides tools
 and strategies to improve quality of care, increase team awareness, clarify
 team roles and responsibilities, improve accuracy and resulting error
 reduction, resolve conflicts, improve information sharing, and eliminate
 barriers to quality and safety.
     The TeamSTEPPS approach has met with great success in a variety of
 settings. It has been implemented in more than 50 U.S. military treatment
 facilities worldwide. It also has been put into practice at academic
 institutions such as Harvard University's Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital
 and Duke University Health System's Pediatric Care Unit.
     About AIR
     Established in 1946, with headquarters in Washington, D.C., the
 American Institutes for Research (AIR) is an independent, nonpartisan,
 not-for-profit organization that conducts behavioral and social science
 research on important social issues and delivers technical assistance both
 domestically and internationally in the areas of health, education, and
 workforce productivity.

SOURCE American Institutes for Research