Department adds new award to showcase patient safety

This year a new award was added: The Escape Fire Patient Safety Award. The recipients are faculty, trainees, or staff members who went above and beyond to keep everyone safe in 2022.

Alëna A. Balasanova, MD, FAPA; Susan Crowder, RN, MSN; Riley Machal, MD; Claudia Moore, MD; and the Department of Psychiatry clinical therapists were the first recipients.

Department of Psychiatry Chair Howard Liu, MD, MBA, nominated Dr. Balasanova for her tireless work creating, refining, and staffing the Addiction Psychiatry Consultation Liaison Service in response to the needs of Internal Medicine and the hospital, saving many lives in the process.

Alëna A. Balasanova, MD, FAPA

Crowder is a nurse in the Psychiatric Emergency Services unit. PES manager Jennifer Sparrock said Crowder does everything she can to make the PES a safe workplace.

“She consistently volunteers to serve on committees, develop protocols, precept new nurses with a keen eye to patient safety,” Sparrock said. “She isn’t afraid to ask the hard questions and will actively pursue a better way for staff and patient safety.”

Dana Raml, MD, said she earned the Escape Fire Patient Safety Award for leading the department to track metabolic monitoring on our patients and improve our processes to ensure patients have the recommended monitoring.

Department of Psychiatry Chair Howard Liu, MD, MBA, nominated Dr. Moore for developing an innovative pilot for addiction medicine in the emergency room and the PES, which triages, bridges, and provides just-in-time services for people with a substance use disorder.

Lauren Edwards, MD, helped develop the Escape Fire Patient Safety Award and suggested that individuals and divisions be nominated. As a result, the clinical therapists were selected for the Escape Fire Patient Safety Award for their hard work in improving clinic systems to improve patient care and make it consistent for all who obtain therapy.

“A lot of work has been done to increase service quality by revising and reworking the onboarding process and quarterly peer chart reviews. For quality improvement, the clinical therapists have revised the structure of treatment goals and started to use standardized assessments to assess improvement. The clinical therapists are consistently looking for ways to work on all these areas,” said Debi Pittock, Ambulatory Supervisor for Clinical Therapists.

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1 comment

  1. Ken Zoucha says:

    I am so proud of my addiction division colleagues for getting these awards! Both Dr. Balasanova and Dr. Moore put 100% into their passion for caring for patients and teaching. I am also lucky to be able to learn from both of them. Congratulations!

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