Orthopaedist group launches initiative promoting patient safety

ROSEMONT, IL: The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons has launched a multiyear campaign to champion patient safety.

ROSEMONT, IL: The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons has launched a multiyear campaign to champion patient safety.

The campaign started with a series of television, radio, and print PSAs done by August, Lang & Husak, a Bethesda, MD-based integrated agency.

The academy is also forming an orthopaedic coalition for patient safety to enlist other healthcare groups in its efforts. "We're the first healthcare organization taking this issue on,

said Sandra Gordon, director of public education and media relations.

The academy's internal communications team will launch PR efforts around the PSAs, trying to focus media attention on patient safety and such issues as wrong-side surgery, Gordon said.

The campaign grew out of "the concerns doctors are having for any kind of mistakes,

Gordon said. "They want to get anybody who has anything to do with orthopaedics involved in this coalition."

The academy has spent $50,000 on the campaign so far, and Gordon expects to receive more funding as her efforts continue. She is trying to organize a fall summit meeting on the patient-safety issue, and to develop a long-range PR plan that will extend into next year and the academy's annual meeting in February.

"This is the first stage of a long-term program. It's going to be a big issue,

she said.

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