Patient Safety Takes the Front Seat

Second Global Ministerial Summit on Patient Safety in Bonn on 29/30 March 2017

Federal Minister of Health Hermann Gröhe will host the Second Global Ministerial Summit on Patient Safety in Bonn on 29/30 March 2017. There is a national consensus among the policy-makers, the medical profession, hospitals and health insurance funds as well as patient groups and industry that safety must be a key theme in taking our health care system further. On the international level, too, awareness of patient safety is rising steadily.

This is why Federal Minister of Health Hermann Gröhe has teamed up with his British counterpart, Jeremy Hunt, to launch an exchange among their opposite numbers around the globe. The immediate result of this initiative was the  in London in the spring of 2016. Now, Federal Minister Hermann Gröhe has invited ministers from more than 50 states and high-ranking representatives of international organisations including the World Bank, the OECD and the Council of Europe, to attend the second Ministerial Summit.

On the first day, German and international experts, joined by representatives of WHO and OECD, will address the current challenges facing patient safety at the former seat of the German Bundestag in Bonn. The workshops will cover a spectrum of topics including the economy and efficiency of patient safety as well as global exchange.

More concrete issues such as mobile health or how to prevent and control infections are also on the agenda. The following day, the ministers and secretaries and their delegations will discuss health policy consequences

Accreditation portals

  • Minister Delegation

    Please note that, for organisational reasons, we can guarantee places in the individual workshops for members of the ministerial delegations only if you register by 13 January 2017. 
  • Experts

    Experts on patient safety may register individually, if they are not members of ministerial delegations, for 29 March, the Experts’ Day of the Summit. Places in the various workshops are guaranteed first to members of the ministerial delegations until 13 January and will then be allocated to individual participants subject to availability.

Workshop description

On the one hand, the aim of the workshop shall be to analyze the economic effects and the efficiency of procedures for the improvement of patient safety at international level. In preparation of this topic, OECD will conduct an international study on economic consequences of patient safety, which is going to regard longer-term and indirect consequences of improved patient safety. On the other hand, the efficiency of patient safety measures will be examined with special attention being paid to safety culture and the influence that leadership style and patients' involvement have in this respect.

This workshop which has been coordinated with WHO will cover international aspects of patient safety. Its main focus will be, inter alia, on strategies that could be implemented in low- and middle-income countries. Moreover, the feasibility to transfer innovative approaches between countries will be discussed. The topics to be examined will include learning, policy & governance as well as leadership.

Mobile technologies (mHealth, handheld devices) and also technologies to process big datasets (Big Data) are gaining worldwide importance in the field of health, and in a tremendously fast manner. With the aid of mHealth, patient safety may be strengthened, especially by improved patient information and adherence as well as by increasing self-determination. Big Data applications hold the promise of more efficient methods of successful treatment by evidence-based and personalised procedures in health care. Opposed to this are the risks concerning e.g. data safety and product quality. Although patient safety is quoted as the key reason and goal of capital investment in those technologies, the purposeful application and analysis of the latter to reach the established goals of patient safety have not yet been sufficiently developed and networked at international level. In this regard, the workshop is supposed to provide solutions. Against this background, one of the key points of emphasis will be patient safety in connection with non-medical health apps, and attention should be paid to the necessary information of customers/patients, transparency and the role of web stores.

The central issue of the workshop will be the discussion of measures to prevent infections, in particular in the context of nosocomial infections and sepsis, but also to reduce the use of antibiotics, thus avoiding antimicrobial resistance. On this occasion it shall be examined to which extent national recommendations on infection prevention can also be applied at international level, and particularly in low- and middle-income countries. Along the discussion of strategies for implementing recommendations for action, aspects such as costs incurred by nosocomial infections and the involvement of patients within the scope of infection prevention will be covered.

The key point of emphasis of this workshop will be the topic of safety culture. In this context, examples - as they have been included e.g. in the brochure on best practices which will be published in preparation of the summit - will be used to show in a practice-oriented manner how safe action can be applied in medical care. In addition to international models of success (.e.g. High 5s) and their adaptation to national health care systems, the implementation of checklists, the dissemination of recommendations for action and patients' information as well as the integration of the topic of patient safety in curricula of medical education could be good examples.

The aim of this workshop is to consider safety when dealing with medicinal products with particular regard to demographic change. Especially where the elderly are concerned, medication errors and adverse drug events frequently occur. Therefore, preventive measures shall be discussed above all, as they may help to avoid medication errors among this group of patients, and also the subsequently resulting expenses in the future.

WHO will present the 'Global Patient Safety Challenge - Medication Safety' which was launched in 2017.