High reliability skills strengthen organization in the fight against COVID-19

April 13, 2020  //  FOUND IN: Strategy & Leadership,

Faculty and staff across Michigan Medicine have a powerful weapon in their arsenal against COVID-19 — high reliability tools and skills.

These skills, taught to all leaders last year and introduced to about 10,000 employees before the pandemic hit, equip faculty and staff with the tools to enhance safety and reduce errors during this very challenging time.

While the universal skills trainings have been interrupted by the current pandemic, employees across the organization already have these skills at their disposal, and many are using them. On his blog, Marschall Runge, M.D., Ph.D., shares examples of how employees across the organization are using high reliability tactics to wage war against COVID-19. 

Below are examples of the behaviors that can ensure Michigan Medicine is providing quality care and keeping everyone safe.

Clarifying questions assist in understanding.

  • The Michigan Medicine safety phrase is “I have a clarifying question.” 
  • Use in high-risk or uncertain/unclear circumstances

Self-check using STAR (Stop, Think, Act, Review) keeps your attention to the task at hand.

  • Use when feeling rushed, multi-tasking or distracted

Cross-checking keeps attention on the people, equipment and environment around us. 

  • Check each other and be willing to be checked.
  • Michigan Medicine safety phrase: “Thanks for saying something.” 
  • Use to point out an unsafe condition or provide a second opinion.

Speak up for safety using ARCC (Ask a question, Request a change, voice a Concern, use Chain of command). 

  • Michigan Medicine safety phrase: “I have a safety concern.”
  • Use when patient, employee or visitor safety may be compromised.

You can find more information and one-page fliers describing these behaviors by clicking here. And be sure to read Runge’s blog for concrete examples of how employees across the organization can use high reliability tactics as they manage the response to COVID-19. 

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