Thanks to a grant from the Jewish Health Foundation (JHF), the Pittsburgh Regional Health Initiative (PRHI) is launching a Health Safety and Technology Project to promote the Pittsburgh region as a hub for autonomous patient safety solutions. The efforts announced late last year draw on the region’s assets in artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), advanced computer science, big data, predictive analytics and life sciences innovation.
PRHI, founded in 1998 as an operational unit of the Jewish Health Foundation, is a regional association of medical, business and community leaders organized to address safety issues and improve health care as a social and business imperative. PRHI directs efforts to drastically reduce nosocomial infections, strengthen the health workforce, and transform care and pay through demonstration projects that melt the transition of patients between health and community facilities, and integrate physical and behavioral health care.
Efforts to establish a Patient Safety Innovation Center in the Pittsburgh region reflect JHF’s decades of work in health safety. This project will seek to connect local partners in Pittsburgh with each other and, if necessary, with national patient safety experts to explore how stand-alone technologies such as AI, ML, big data analytics and robotics can improve our understanding of the preconditions for medical errors and our discovery of safe solutions. The Pittsburgh region aims to become a national hub for autonomous solutions; why not patient safety solutions?
A $ 500,000 two-year grant provides funding from January 2022 to June 2024 to support the development of a regional autonomous patient safety plan to document regional resources; initial funding for the most promising breakthrough product and technology ideas in autonomous patient safety; support for regional conferences on AI and health; and developing a prototype to adapt hospitals and health care command centers to prevent and prevent medical errors.
“We represent Pittsburgh as a world leader in autonomous patient safety, drawing on our excellence in pharmacology, medicine and technology,” said Karen Volk Feinstein, president and CEO of the Jewish Health Foundation. “It’s long overdue. Health safety technology is at the cottage stage; we are now aiming for the moon and it should come from Pittsburgh.”
The JHF has also been a leader in pushing for the creation of a Federal Patient Safety Council at the federal level, similar to the National Transport Safety Council. In a recent article, Wolf Feinstein noted that a few hours after the catastrophic collapse of the Fern Hollow Bridge in Pittsburgh, the National Transport Safety Council was on the scene and found answers to the question “Why?” and “How can we prevent this ever again?” However, she added: “We do not have a single federal agency tasked with a single mission: to make health care as safe as possible by exploring ways to address serious threats.”