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Program Information

Implementation of An Incident Learning System in a Multidisciplinary Environment a Leadership Opportunity for Medical Physicists


B Clark

B G Clark*, The Ottawa Hospital Cancer Centre, Ottawa, ON

TU-C-211-3 Tuesday 10:30:00 AM - 12:30:00 PM Room: 211

One of the challenges for medical physicists practicing in radiation oncology is communication with the other professionals in the program – in some scenarios it may seem that we speak a different language! These professionals are all highly trained but few of them have the high level of problem solving skills common to physicists. This aspect of our training offers the opportunity to contribute significantly to leadership in the program in several ways.

The management of error in radiation treatment has come under intense focus in recent years, in part due to the continued occurrence of adverse incidents, some of the more severe of which may be attributed to medical physics activities. A baseline requirement for error management is full understanding of clinical processes and associated potential failure modes. One way to do this is through incident learning; specifically the investigation and analysis of both actual and near-miss (or potential) events. This lecture will describe the implementation of a comprehensive incident learning system, outlining strategies designed to establish a collaborative safety culture by breaking down professional barriers that often prevent process improvement.

Learning Objectives:
1. Understand the value of a comprehensive incident learning system
2. Understand the barriers that must be overcome to effectively implement such a system
3. Understand why the physicist plays a vital role in error management


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