Empowered patients bridging the gap between “business as usual” and commitment to a culture of universal quality and safety in healthcare delivery.

Medical errors happen everyday, many of which might never be known beyond an “inner medical circle”. Εven if patients note errors, omissions, bad practices, they have very few possibilities to influence a culture change in quality of healthcare delivery, said Kathi Apostolidis at a recent healthcare conference in Chania, Crete.

Kathi Apostolidis, ECPC Vice-President was an invited speaker at the Congress organized by the Directorate of Quality of Healthcare of the Greek Ministry of Health, that was held in Chania, Crete on September 26-29, 2013.

Kathi believes that quality in healthcare is a matter of culture and such it should start very early and long before both health care professionals and patients pass the entrance door of the hospital. She also noted that patients should be empowered by their physicians to be conscious of rules of patient safety and invited to participate in the Quality of Care Committees.

''The culture of quality and safety of healthcare starts long before the “partners in healthcare” - patients, doctors, nurses, manufacturers, technologists , etc. - pass the entrance door of hospitals . The culture of quality and safety of healthcare delivery starts in medical school, is integrated in health care policies, aims at educating and empowering citizens and patients to report whatever they remark, is regularly audited, gets continuously improved by empowering all actors to become actively involved'', concluded Kathi Apostolidis.