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VHA National Center for Patient Safety

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VA Patient Safety Fellowships

The VA National Center for Patient Safety, in cooperation with the VA Office of Academic Affiliations have teamed up to offer fellowships in patient safety.

Medical error is the fourth leading cause of mortality within the United States. The Advanced Fellowship in Patient Safety program equips future leaders across all professions and backgrounds to analyze and safeguard healthcare delivery.

The one-year, non-accredited, training fellowship develops the next generation of leaders in healthcare safety and runs yearly from July 1st to June 30th. Our fellows receive intensive training in:

  • Clinical aspects of patient safety
  • Health services research methodology
  • Lean yellow belt certification
  • Process improvement methodology
  • Metrics and data analysis
  • Healthcare Root Cause Analysis and Proactive Risk Assessment
  • High Reliability Organizations
  • Educational Design
  • Leadership
  • And more

The program is for clinical, and non-clinical, post-doctoral or post-masters-degree-trained individuals with backgrounds including:

  • Post-residency trained physicians
  • Nursing
  • Psychology
  • Pharmacy
  • Social work
  • Health care administration
  • Computer science
  • Human factors engineering
  • And more

The program is based out of 7 different VA locations. Be a part of up to 16 advanced fellows in learning and applying your skillsets to safeguard healthcare and explore career options within the VA.

Start or rejuvenate your career. Join the VA for a year of mentoring and professional development!

Ann Arbor, Michigan

  • Small town-major university setting; close connection to central office in DC
  • Patient safety leadership; policy
  • Development, implementation, and operation of system-wide patient safety programs
  • Alert & advisory processes
  • Access to patient safety database
  • Work with FDA, other government and regulatory agencies; work with manufacturers and standards organizations
  • Root Cause Analysis, Healthcare Failure Mode and Effect Analysis, Medical Team Training, Patient Safety curriculum for graduate medical education
  • High fidelity simulation for training and assessing teamwork skills
  • Contact:

Indianapolis, Indiana

  • Identifying and motivating for evidence-based practice
  • Informatics
  • Hand-offs
  • Healthcare engineers
  • Associated School of Public Health
  • Contact: Tyler Davis:

Lexington, KY

  • Tertiary care center adjacent to the University of Kentucky Hospital
  • Opportunities to engage with executive leadership on meetings and projects
  • Open discussion of systems-issues by residents and fellows
  • Fellowship is onsite between two campuses
  • Participate in Root Cause Analyses, Healthcare Failure Mode and Effect Analyses, High Reliability Organization, LEAN, LEAN Tools
  • Work on projects to improve safety and care for our Veterans
  • Network among all services to learn about clinical and nonclinical hospital flows
  • Opportunities to engage with strategic planning groups
  • Fellows are aligned under the Quality, Performance, & Patient Safety Department
  • Development of team leadership skills
  • Contact: Elizabeth Lancaster:

Milwaukee, WI

  • Urban medical center on Lake Michigan
  • Multiple services including spinal cord injury center, long term care, physical rehabilitation, and Community Homes, with three community based outpatient clinics and a health care center serving a culturally and economically diverse group of Veterans
  • Major affiliates include College of Wisconsin with a Clinical Translational Science institute, Marquette University and University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
  • State of the art simulation center and a long-standing, active in-situ simulation training program
  • Opportunity to be mentored by patient safety leaders in the organization and an interprofessional faculty team
  • Flexibility to focus on either the clinical application of patient safety concepts and/or education or research skills training
  • Make change or add to current knowledge and/or practice through an interdisciplinary facility-wide patient safety project
  • Contact: Florine Ndakuya-Fitzgerald:

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

  • Major city, major university (University of Pennsylvania) setting
  • Affiliation with Patient Safety Program at Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and CHIPS (Center for Healthcare Innovation and Patient Safety) at Penn.
  • Concentration on use of simulation in patient safety and education; rotations at Penn’s Clinical Simulation Center
  • Opportunity to enroll in courses at Penn’s Center for Clinical Epidemiology & Biostatistics, Simulation Center, and School of Nursing
  • Contact: Gregg Lipschik:

Pittsburgh, PA

  • Human Factors emphasis, particularly as relates to medical device safety and information system design
  • Access to state-of-the-art medical simulation center for patient safety research and quality improvement projects
  • Close collaboration with clinical teams at the point-of-care in a high complexity academic VA medical center
  • Opportunities to lead inter-disciplinary teams in patient safety quality improvement projects
  • Mentored experiences in project management, proposal writing, and research
  • Contacts:

Tampa, Florida

  • Polytrauma center of excellence
  • Research and research implementation
  • Preventing falls and fall related injuries in elderly
  • Studies related to safety of equipment
  • Safe Patient Handling and Mobility (SPHM)
  • Studies of interventions to improve gait and balance
  • Geriatrics (Community Living Center, GeriPACT, Home Based Primary Care, Hospice and Palliative Care)
  • Spinal cord injury
  • Mobility issues
  • Pressure injuries
  • Quality improvement
  • Evaluation methods
  • Implementation science
  • Contacts: