Patient Safety Scholars Program

An Online Learning Community and Course (October 2015 – April 2016)

Coordinator: Joey Almaguer

Date: October (2015) – February (2016)

Time: Tuesday 8:30-10:30pm ET

Phone: (832) 588-8620



What exactly is patient safety and how significant is it to modern medicine? With tens of thousands of patients dying each year from preventable causes, how do we approach such a complex issue? Are there any solutions and if so, are they feasible? Throughout this program we will discuss in depth the many questions that aim to clarify what causes unnecessary patient deaths in the U.S. health care system. We will explore the various factors that contribute to unnecessary patient deaths and consider potential prevention strategies to combat these patient safety concerns.


There will be eight sessions with different topics for discussion. Each session (except for the first and last) will have an online article to read before participating in the discussion.

The articles will assist us in providing some background information as well as guiding us through the content. There will also be one guest for each session to provide us with their experience and answers to any questions we may have.

Session Absences

Each session is recorded, so if you are unable to attend one of them, please ask for the video and I will send it to you. To make sure that you are involved in each session, you will also be asked to write a reflection paragraph about what was discussed in the session and your own position on the matter. The reflection paragraph will be due on the date of the following session.

Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI)

The IHI open school online courses will offer us another method at which we can gain a grip on the various aspects of patient safety. As a student, you are able to sign up and take the IHI patient safety modules for free. It is required that you complete 7 modules (PS 100-106) + 2 more of your choice that are offered by IHI and can be found here:

The modules can be completed at your own pace, but should be finished by the end of the program in order to receive credit.

Final Project

The final project for the program is an essay of 3-5 pages on any of the topics that are discussed throughout the program. This may include topics in our discussions or in the IHI patient safety modules. You will write about how a specific issue contributes to unnecessary patient deaths and what projects, actions, or initiatives can be taken in order to prevent them. For example, if you pick implicit bias as the topic for your essay, you will write about how implicit bias contributes to unnecessary patient deaths and any potential solutions that you see feasible in a health care environment. The essay will be due on 02/16/15 so that our last session will be devoted to sharing and discussing these solutions to patient safety concerns.

Session Schedule

Date and Time Topic and Article
10/20/15 8:30pm ET Introduction to Patient Safety Scholars Program
11/10/15 8:30pm ET Ethical Controversies in Patient Safety
12/01/15 8:30pm ET Implicit Bias: Is It a Real Issue in Modern Medicine?
12/29/16 8:30pm ET The Business Advantage and the Patient Disadvantage: Exploiting Misfortune
01/12/16 8:30pm ET Lack of Primary Care Physicians: The Risks to the Patient
02/02/16 8:30pm ET Increased Health Care Regulation: Is it Counterproductive?
02/23/16 8:30pm ET Patient Safety Around the World: How/What Are Other Countries Doing?
March, TBD How Do We Prevent Preventable Deaths?

Program Registration Fees
AMSA Student Member $40
Non-Member $140*

* Non-member fee includes AMSA membership, if applicable

For More Information, Contact

Alison Case, MD, Education and Advocacy Fellow, AMSA

Joey Almaguer, Scholars Program Coordinator