Safety Measurement Framework

In a nutshell: The Improvement Academy is working with frontline NHS organisations to test the Measurement and Monitoring of Safety Framework developed by Professor Charles Vincent. Our goal is to help organisations understand ‘How safe is our care’ and identify areas which present greatest opportunity for safety improvement.

The Challenge

Patient safety is a priority and there are questions over whether the NHS is any safer today than it was 10 years ago. Current approaches to measurement focus on past harm and have fundamental flaws. Patient safety incident reporting picks up less than 5% of true harm within hospitals. Patient and staff surveys suffer from low response rates and are poor measures of safety. Mortality statistics may not equate to the quality and safety of care. In healthcare, we need to move on from a focus on past harm, to understanding how safe care is on a day to day basis and anticipating potential harms.

What are we doing about it?

The Improvement Academy has been awarded funding from the Health Foundation for a programme of work which will review and redefine the way we approach measures of safety in healthcare. The Safety Measurement and Monitoring Programme will run over a period of 18 months.

The Measurement and Monitoring Safety Framework has been tested in two frontline NHS organisations as part of Phase 1 (Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and Bradford District Care Trust) to map current measures against the Framework, identify gaps and use new and innovative methods to address these (e.g. case-note review, PRASE, safety culture and huddles). We are now introducing Phase 2 of the programme to apply the framework and spread the learning to our wider network across Yorkshire and Humber.



Our future plans

  • Organisational learning and improvement – bringing together boards to learn
  • Understanding the application of the Framework at the frontline through learning sessions
  • Development of an interactive PDF to include various tools for improvement
  • A series of events scheduled for 2017 to enable NHS organisation to find out more



MMSF Roundtable Event
Tuesday 24th January 2017
The Studio, Leeds
Initial event aimed at Medical Directors, Chief Nurses, Patient Safety and Governance Leads

To reserve your place, contact Shahima.Begum@yhahsn.nhs.uk

A series of follow on workshops are being planned and will be advertised shortly.

For further information and related resources, please visit:


Teamwork and Safety Culture Survey

Measurement of team safety culture is a core element of our patient safety work. The Improvement Academy is using a validated tool developed by University of Texas within a framework of systematic team-level data collection and analysis.