Patient Safety

Patient safety is a worldwide concern in health care delivery within emergency departments. It involves the “…minimisation of risk of patient harm due to healthcare,”1 and is important in the reduction of the occurrence and effect of adverse events.

As a discipline, patient safety uses current research from a variety of sources to minimise harm caused to patients and to attain a dependable health care system. Patient safety is integral to ACEM’s Quality Framework.


Standards and Guidelines

ACEM: Quality Standards for Emergency Departments and Other Hospital-Based Emergency Care Services

ACEM: Quality Standards for Rural Emergency Departments (PDF)  

National Standards for Hospitals and Health Services

Guidelines on clinical handover in the Emergency Department (PDF)


ACSQH: Nursing and Medical Handover in General Surgery, Emergency Medicine and General medicine at the Royal Hobart Hospital

IHI: Leadership Guide to Patient Safety

IHI: What is a Culture of Safety?

Waitemata District Health Board (New Zealand) Just Culture Policy (PDF)

WHO: More than Words: Conceptual Framework for the International Classification for Patient Safety (PDF)


United States based Institute for Healthcare Improvement – weekly newsletter available

Joint Commission/World Health Organization (WHO) Patient Safety Solutions

Pan American Health Organization (PAHO): Quality of Care and Patient Safety (Spanish and English)

Joint Commission National Patient Safety Goals

Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care

The Australian Council on Healthcare Standards – Patient Safety Lead Training Program

The Australian Council on Healthcare Standards – Improvement Academy

Australian Patient Safety Foundation

Consumers Advancing Patient Safety

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality: PS Net (Patient Safety Network)

National Patient Safety Agency (United Kingdom): Patient Safety First

ACEM Best of Web EM Resources

Emergency Medicine Events Register (EMER)


Communication and clinical handover in Emergency Departments workshop

Accelerated Patient Safety Workshop – A Patient’s Perspective

Please contact [email protected] if you identify any other online patient safety resources suitable to share on this site, or if you would like further information.
[1] The Australian Patient Safety Foundation, Annual Report 2013-2014, p. 2, accessed 21 October, 2015