SCCAD Receives 2019 ‘EMS Patient Safety First’ Award

The Center for Patient Safety (CPS) recently recognized the St. Charles County (MO) Ambulance District (SCCAD) for the EMS Patient Safety First Award.

CPS Executive Director Alex Christgen said district leaders have shown dedication and resilience by taking proactive steps to improve SCCAD’s patient safety culture, and the employees have shown spirited dedication in advancing the safe care of their patients. The EMS Patient Safety Award was presented to SCCAD during the East Central Region Clinical Save Banquet on April 18.


“Only one Emergency Medical Service provider in the United States is selected annually to receive this prestigious award,” Christgen said, “and I am pleased that St. Charles County Ambulance District has been selected. Their achievements are significant and deserving of this recognition.”


The award is given as part of EMS Week, set for May 19-25. Last year’s recipient was Lee County Florida Public Safety EMS. This is the second year the award has been given.
Lee Varner, director of patient safety at CPS, noted, “EMS is a high-consequence industry where organizations will be successful through a commitment to continuous improvement and effective adaption to change.”


SCCAD has developed and implemented several new practices that, Varner said, demonstrate the district’s proven leadership in the EMS field. Those practices include:
• Adopting a “just” culture to encourage recognition and reporting of near misses and medical errors so lessons can be learned from mistakes.


• Implementing the Medication Administration Cross Check (MACC) with staff to reduce medication errors. SCCAD also integrates MACC procedures while training paramedic students and utilizes the cross check during other educational events.


• Establishing a Peer Review Committee where peer clinicians review medical reports and events to ensure care is exceptional, and improvements are identified then implemented. SCCAD’s peer review model has been shared with numerous medical providers across the country.
• Developing a patient safety plan that actively involves leadership and frontline staff.
About CPS: The Center for Patient Safety is a non-profit organization whose mission is reducing preventable harm through creative and innovative patient safety solutions. CPS provides patient safety
improvement consulting, educating, and supporting services to hospitals, home care, nursing homes, EMS, ASCs, medical offices, and pharmacies across the United States. Find the Center for Patient Safety on Facebook and Twitter @PtSafetyExpert.