UW News

January 19, 2006

Lecture topic: The nursing shortage and patient safety

A free public lecture on the national nursing shortage and its impact on patient safety is set for 5:30 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 2, in 130 Kane.

Dr. Linda Aiken, the Claire M. Fagin leadership professor in nursing at the University of Pennsylvania, will be the speaker for the School of Nursing’s 27th annual Elizabeth Sterling Soule Endowed Lecture. Her topic is The Nursing Shortage: The Impact of Nursing and Patient Safety.

Aiken is recognized as a pioneering researcher on the relationship between nursing care and patient outcomes. She directs the Center for Health Outcomes and Policy Research at the University of Pennsylvania and is also a professor of sociology there.

Her research and leadership of the International Hospital Outcomes Consortium and the international Nursing Quality Improvement initiative have helped show how magnet hospital standards improve quality of care in the United States and abroad. UW Medical Center was one of the first “magnet hospitals” in the nation.

Medical errors have been identified as the eighth leading cause of death in the United States — above car accidents and breast cancer.

Evidence shows that nursing care is directly related to patient safety: a recent study found that some deaths could be prevented if nurses cared for fewer patients. For more information, call Lia Unrau at 206-221-2456.