ASPHP Jan 2020 Newsletter

Editor: Beth Furlong, PhD, JD, RN

January 2020 Guest Column

System Safety Trifecta

Susan Salsbury OTR/L, CDMS, CSPHP
System Manager Disability Services

Have you ever felt that your healthcare organization is working in silos, duplicating efforts and reworking projects, and being ineffective in making change? My organization decided to battle those common issues by integrating our existing safe patient handling, fall reduction, and patient mobility programs and unite these powerful tools, with the intention of promoting a single effective culture of safety for both patients and associates.

My organization dubbed this new program the System Safety Trifecta, or SST for short.
The first step was to create the System Safety Trifecta Interprofessional Committee by defining the membership and structure of the committee.

Our executive sponsor was the Chief Nursing Officer and Vice President for Patient Care from one our 13 care sites. Our key opinion leaders included interprofessional subject matter experts from across the system. The team included nursing, rehab therapists and associate health. Core committee members included interdisciplinary representatives from each care site with a commitment to facilitate, engage, and promote the culture of safety throughout OhioHealth. Subcommittee members included interprofessional healthcare associates at the care site level that champion these initiatives.

The goals of the System Safety Trifecta Interprofessional committee are to:

  • Integrate care site specific Fall Prevention and SPHM committees into a united committee.
  • Collaborate with direct patient care associates to review and analyze current practices and recommendations for best practices.
  • Create a resource toolkit readily available to all frontline associates to promote a culture of safety.
  • Share outcomes and best practices for Falls, SPHM, and Patient Mobility across individual sites and the system as a whole.
  • Report progress to Shared Governance Councils (or equivalent care site councils), Nurse Executive Teams, Environment of Care and Safety Peer Groups, Quality and Safety Committees, and Lean Promotion Offices.

The committee charter was then developed to summarize the goals of the committee:

  • Create a plan to develop a culture of safety and promote Mobility as Medicine by synchronizing the efforts of fall prevention, safe patient handling (SPHM) and patient mobility.
  • Utilize evidence-based practice recommendations to develop standard work and education guidelines for fall prevention, SPHM, and patient mobility at all sites.
  • Evaluate outcomes driven by the System Safety Trifecta efforts to prevent harm to both patients and associates.

The SST committee has been operational since December 2018. The members meet monthly to share best practices and lessons learned. There is a WebEx to facilitate engagement from all care sites. In addition, we have created a shared collaboration website on the organization’s intraweb. We have created standards of work related to all three initiatives. The key opinion leaders meet monthly prior to the larger monthly group WebEx to strategize.

As part of the mobility initiative my organization rolled out Bedside Mobility Assessment Tool (BMAT) at a system level to provide bedside nurses with an evidence-based tool to assess patient mobility. Prior to this there was no standard way for nurses to assess mobility and many times the bedside nurse waited until therapy was consulted to mobilize their patients. This action aided the shift necessary to promote mobility as medicine.

The rollout presentation included the complications of immobility and the benefits of mobility for patient outcomes. My organization chose the BMAT over other mobility assessment tools due to its ease of use, validity and reliability and the fact that it interfaced with our current electronic medical record (EMR). We were hopeful that through the implementation of BMAT that we would see increased utilization of safe patient handling technologies and this is still a work in progress. Our short term goals with the mobility initiative are to mobilize patients to their maximum potential at least three times per day, to monitor patient mobility in the EMR, and to report outcomes at our monthly SST meetings.

Each care site now has a system dedicated nurse manager partner for SST. In the new process for patient handling injury follow-up, the associate health therapist reviews the injury report to determine if it was indeed a patient handling injury. The injury report and a post injury review form then help determine a root cause. The patient handling injury classifications from Aon are utilized to better trend the mechanism of injury. At the monthly SST meetings the care site managers report lessons learned from the follow-ups so information can be reported and shared among the care sites.

Existing fall prevention initiatives were more robust than the SPHM and patient mobility initiatives due to the reporting requirements in use for National Database of Nursing Quality Indicators (NDNQI) and the ANCC Magnet Recognition Program. Since my organization is a multi-hospital health care system and we now have a flex team of associates who travel throughout the system, we felt it was important to have a consistent visual management tool for falls. We enlisted the help of our change management team to strategize how to best operationalize a system wide change.

Then we created a business case for change. It helps to create consistency in messaging around the change and also acts as a communication tool to enlist and encourage support for the change.

  • Potential business benefits for change included decreased fall rates, decreased injury rates, decreased costs (injury fall cost between $5,600 and $12,800 on average, and increased length of stay by almost seven days) and better communication among care teams about who is a fall risk and why.
  • Expected benefits for patients include safer environments that lead to a decreased number of injuries.
  • Expected benefits for associates are a simple, easy and consistent visual tool.
  • Organizational benefits include improved patient outcomes (decreased length of stay, decreased costs and mental distress to patients).

After much work, we are currently ready to roll out the new system fall visual. It is important to have appropriate learning and to send a consistent message. My organization has created a falls video addressing the impact of falls on patients, the associated costs and negative outcomes. There will be a mandatory online education course and tools with specific instructions. We intend to have a gradual roll out, much like we did when we rolled out BMAT and the patient mobility initiatives.

We are hopeful that with the integration of these three healthcare initiatives we will see improved patient mobility, improved patient outcomes, a decrease in patient falls and a reduction in patient handling injuries by promoting a unified System Safety Trifecta.

Our safe patient handling and mobility program has been spearheaded through the passion and enthusiasm of an Occupational Therapist in the Associate Health Department during a long 15 year journey. The therapist saw first-hand the devastating impact of patient handling injuries on health care workers through work with the onsite transitional work program. If you are interested in more detail about our SST please feel free to contact me at



ASPHP Membership Meeting & Networking Reception

ASPHP Membership Meeting & Networking Reception

The ASPHP cordially invites all members and prospective members to join us for our Annual Meeting, which will be held during the 2020 ASPHP National SPHM Education Event in San Diego, CA.
Come network with fellow association members, clinicians, administrators, sponsors and board members. Learn more about the present and future of the association and our efforts to improve safety for caregivers!

Date: Tuesday, March 3rd, 2020
Location: Town and Country, San Diego, CA – Golden Ballroom.

Membership Meeting starts at 5:00 pm and follows with networking reception from 6:00 – 7:00 pm.
The Networking Reception is sponsored by Liberty Mutual and Guldmann.

We hope to see you there!

New Membership Benefit- ASPHP Discussion List

New Membership Benefit- ASPHP Discussion List

A new members-only discussion forum, called ASPHP Discussion Group, will provide an online space for those in the Association of Safe Patient Handling Professionals to address industry-related topics. This Discussion Group, also known as an electronic mailing list, allows ASPHP members to interact through the convenience of email messaging.

Log in to post comments, questions, clinical research or industry-related news to others who have a common interest in safe patient handling and mobility. Fellow members can respond or simply read what has been posted. The ASPHP Discussion Group is a way to socialize and network from anywhere around the world. Each member can decide if he or she wants to actively participate or be a ‘fly on the wall’ simply observing.

Get started by clicking here to read participation rules and etiquette tips, then head to the Discussion Group to join the conversation. We’re Stronger Together!

Why You Need to Register Now?

Why You Need to Register Now?


This is the time to reserve your place at our 2020 National SPHM Education Event.
The interactive, solutions-based program — to be held at Town & Country, San Diego, CA— will provide participants with practical strategies and implementation tips that can be adapted and applied to your safe patient handling programs. Special track for PT & OT will be offered.

In this program, you will learn:

  • Framework for program structure and management
  • Objective assessment of clinical excellence
  • Best practice and culture of excellence across the organization
  • Strengthen community confidence in the quality and safety of patient handling
  • Engage in the practical application of equipment, devices and tools across practice settings

For more information, visit Come join us.

Register Now

Hotel information
The National Event is being held at the
Click here for more information.



Amico’s New Silver Sponsorship

Amico’s New Silver Sponsorship

The ASPHP’s Board of Directors thanks

for their new Silver sponsorship!

Amico Mobility is a leading innovator in the medical industry with a primary focus on safe patient handling. The products are designed to facilitate the clinician to achieve the best possible outcomes for patients.

Amico’s GoLift is the smallest, most compact patient lift on the market today, weighing only 10lbs and lifting up to 700lbs. Two compact GoLifts in tandem are available to lift patients up to 1000lbs. The capacitive touch hand control, sleek design, and smooth edges allow for easy cleaning and disinfecting, targeting effective infection control. The GoLift is equipped with all state-of-the-art metal gears to ensure durability, safety, and reliability. The intuitive back-up emergency lowering system is operated by pulling the strap, prompting the GoLift to lower as the LED lights on the unit turn red. Additionally, the GoLift can be integrated into the Patient Lift Pendant (PLP) System where a lift track is assembled into a boom arm.

Using this proven design and technology from the GoLift, Amico has created the GoLift Portable450. Similar to the GoLift, the GoLift Portable450 is the lightest and most compact portable ceiling lift on the market today, weighing only 6lbs and lifting up to 450lbs. As a truly portable unit, the GoLift Portable450 can easily be carried from room to room, has controls on the unit, as well as your choice of a wired or wireless hand control. The reacher bar comes in two standard lengths with the option to customize. The emergency lowering system is operated by gently pushing down on the red emergency button.

Learn more about Amico, visit 

Ajro & P. X. Inc’s Continued Sponsorship

Ajro & P. X. Inc’s Continued Sponsorship

The ASPHP’s Board of Directors thanks




for their continued sponsorship!

Upcoming ASPHP Webinar Series

Upcoming ASPHP Webinar Series

February 12th, 2020
Recovery Models for Healthcare Workers
Presented by: Vicki Missar MS, CPE, SSBB, CSPHP, CHSP, AON

March 11th, 2020
Implementing the Bedside Mobility Assessment Tool
Amber Perez MHA, CSPHP