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...a club for people who never stop learning

The Scientech Club provides a forum for weekly presentations and discussions in the fields of science and technology and other topics for the enlightenment of its membership.

Regular, one-hour Meetings are, with the exception of holidays, held every Monday at noon at The Northside Knights of Columbus, 2100 East 71st Street, Indianapolis. Club Members, as well as the general public, may attend our Regular Meetings for a nominal contribution to pay for the facility. For those who wish, a buffet lunch may be enjoyed before the meeting. Occasionally, instead of a presentation, members and their guests may take a tour to a place of interest, such as a plant or historical site.

The Scientech Club is associated with two outstanding local charitable Foundations, established by Scientech members to promote science education: The D.J. Angus - Scientech Foundation and the R. B. Annis Educational Foundation.

Vol 91 No 34 - September 15, 2014

Highly Reliable Healthcare

Presented By: Bill Corley


Bill Corley

Bill Corley spoke today on improving hospital patient safety. He received his Masters in Hospital Administration at Duke University, was Administrative Director at Walter Reed Medical Center and was Director of Operations for Third Field Hospital in Viet Nam while in the US Army. From 1984 until he resigned, he was CEO of Community Health Network. He is now Special Consultant for Health Care Improvement LLC.

According to a 1999 report by the Institute of Medicine there were between 44,000 and 98,000 avoidable deaths per year in American hospitals. He says this number is unchanged today. His company provides coaches and consultants with the goal of improving this record.

Mr. Corley reports that Indianapolis can claim one major distinction. This is the only place in the U.S. that has a group from the local hospitals that meets to discuss their patient care accidents with a view to eliminating recurrence.

He discussed injuries of many types: errors in medical procedures, errors in medication and unsafe conditions in the physical plant (e.g. falls). There are errors committed by someone who knows how to do a procedure but does it wrong once, as well as having an incompetent person doing it. There are also errors in providing the wrong material.

He feels that improvement requires a complete change of mind set and recommends consultation with members of the airline industry which has tackled similar problems with much success. He showed a chart listing many goals of hospitals and, currently, patient safety was not in first place.

Mr. Corley also feels that engineers should be consulted because of the logical way they assess problems.

While working at Community Hospital he was able to learn of many otherwise unreported problems from a nurse who kept him informed.

Other problems were touched on including working within a budget and the need for competent help, but he pointed out the fact that any patient injury is unacceptable. He closed with a slide listing things in their order of importance at a youth camp. One of them was "safety first," but it was listed in third place.

Notes by Jack Slichenmeyer