Toward Improving Patient Safety Through Voluntary Peer-to-Peer Assessment

Daniel W. Hudson, Christine G. Holzmueller, Peter J Pronovost, Sebastiana J. Gianci, Zack T. Pate, Joyce Wahr, Eugenie S Heitmiller, David A. Thompson, Elizabeth A Martinez, Jill A. Marsteller, Ayse P. Gurses, Lisa H. Lubomski, Christine A. Goeschel, Julius Cuong Pham

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


Health care has primarily used retrospective review approaches to identify and mitigate hazards, with little evidence of measurable and sustained improvements in patient safety. Conversely, the nuclear power industry has used a prospective peer-to-peer (P2P) assessment process grounded in open information exchange and cooperative organizational learning to realize substantial and sustainable improvements in safety. In comparing approaches, it is evident that health care's sluggish progress stems from weaknesses in hazard identification and mitigation and in organizational learning. This article proposes creating and implementing a structured prospective P2P assessment model in health care, similar to that used in the nuclear power industry, to accelerate improvements in patient safety.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)201-209
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican Journal of Medical Quality
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 2012


  • nuclear safety
  • patient safety
  • peer assessment
  • peer-assisted learning

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Policy


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