Prevention is Better than Cure : Learning from Adverse Events in Healthcare book cover
1st Edition

Prevention is Better than Cure
Learning from Adverse Events in Healthcare

ISBN 9781138197763
Published March 6, 2017 by CRC Press
136 Pages 3 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Adverse events occur in healthcare with worrying and surprising frequency and, of these, a substantial portion are preventable. This highly-readable book, translated and update from the original Dutch edition, presents 15 model case studies which have been carefully designed to explore common themes in medical errors and offer learnings from those events that will guide practice to prevent similar tragedies unfolding in future. Using 15 years of experience working in patient safety, the author makes concrete recommendations around assessment, attitude and performance, and provides a concise and accessible methodology for working safely.

Table of Contents


Chapter 1 – Worst Case Scenario

Chapter 2 – your own observation is flawed

Chapter 3 – Assumption is the mother of all screw-ups

Chapter 4 – be prepared

Chapter 5 – Speak up

Chapter 6 – What am I missing here?

Chapter 7 – Nine Red Flags

Chapter 8 – HALT

Chapter 9 – Photo or film

Chapter 10 – Risk accumulation

Chapter 11 – Just Culture

Chapter 12 – Blind faith

Chapter 13 – Bias

Chapter 14 – Professional performance

Chapter 15 – Open Disclosure

Chapter 16 – Epilogue

Chapter 17 – Summary

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Ian Leistikow is a non-practicing physician. He was the coordinator of the patient safety program within the University Medical Center Utrecht, the Netherlands, from 2003 to 2011. This program comprised for example the introduction of Root Cause Analysis (RCA), proactive risk analysis (HFMEA), research on handoffs, research on patient participation and a video game on patient safety ( He has set up various patient safety related trainings, has published multiple articles about patient safety and is co-author on a book about RCA. In December 2011 he published his PhD thesis on how the Board of Directors can lead patient safety improvements. His thesis is condensed into an article which was published in BMJ in July 2011. In 2014 he published a Dutch book on learning from Sentinel Events, which was widely recognized in the Netherlands. Since April 2011 Ian works as senior inspector at the Dutch Healthcare Inspectorate. There his tasks include judging the quality of sentinel event analysis reports from hospitals and coordinating the Dutch national set of quality indicators for hospitals. Ian is member of the Strategic Advisory Board of the International Forum on Quality and Safety in Healthcare. He is also one of the initiators of GetUpGetBetter (, a series of international healthcare quality competitions, that is currently being developed.