After an on-site review and implementation of the Just Culture philosophy and concept with David Marx and John Westphal of Outcome Engenuity in the fall of 2018, SHS has embraced and is implementing facility-wide a “Just Culture” philosophy including education and training to leadership and staff.
“A just culture balances the need for an open and honest reporting environment with the end of a quality learning environment and culture. While the organization has a duty and responsibility to employees (and ultimately to patients), all employees are held responsible for the quality of their choices. Just culture requires a change in focus from errors and outcomes to system design and management of the behavioral choices of all employees.” – Marx D. Patient Safety and the Just Culture: A Primer for Health Care Executives. New York, NY: Trustees of Columbia University;; 2001.
A fair and just culture improves patient safety by empowering employees to proactively monitor the workplace and participate in safety efforts in the work environment. Improving patient safety reduces risk by its focus on managing human behavior (or helping others to manage their own behavior) and redesigning systems. In a just culture, employees are not only accountable for their actions and choices, but they are also accountable to each other. A just culture fosters innovation and cross-departmental communication.
In a just culture, both the organization and its people are held accountable while focusing on risk, systems design, human behavior, and patient safety.