PLYMOUTH MEETING, PA—ECRI Institute, a nonprofit that researches the best approaches to improve patient care, along with the Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation (AAMI), announces a health IT focused pre-conference session at the 2014 Annual Healthcare Information & Management Systems Society (HIMSS) Conference & Exhibition in Orlando, FL.

This pre-conference workshop, “Patient Safety - Making Healthcare Safer: Health IT Challenges and Solutions,” will highlight what leading health systems are doing to identify and prevent IT-related errors, and begins on Sunday, February 23, 2014, from 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM EST.

Experts from ECRI Institute, including Ronni Solomon, JD, executive vice president and general counsel​ and Erin Sparnon, engineering manager, Health Devices, will review the patient safety infrastructure and governance in place and explore how leveraging health IT helps solve safety issues.

“This pre-conference workshop is a great opportunity to explore different channels for health IT in today’s hospital setting, and also explore IT-enabled solutions to other non-IT-related safety problems,” states William M. Marella, director, Patient Safety Reporting Programs, ECRI Institute. “This program brings together thought leaders, like Dr. David Classen and Dr. Dean Sittig, ONC leaders, experts from ECRI Institute, AAMI, and others who are working on the front lines at the intersection of patient safety and health IT.” 

Topics covered include:

  • Applying safety science to health IT
  • Strategizing for health IT safety surveillance and response 
  • Incorporating safety risk management into IT processes and culture
  • Applying human factors principles and usability to your EHR implementation
  • Safety solutions in system integration and interoperability 
  • Future directions for patient safety through health IT

This pre-conference workshop is intended for hospital administrative, clinical, and IT leadership, managers and professionals in informatics, patient safety, quality, and risk management, as well as other healthcare professionals with an interest in leveraging health IT to improve patient safety.

ECRI Institute safety experts Karen P. Zimmer, MD, MPH, FAAP, and William M. Marella will also present a session during HIMSS14 on Tuesday, February 25, from 1:00 to 2:00 PM in Room 207C at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando. This session, "Applying Risk Management Tools to Health IT Safety Challenges" (Session #96), focuses on diagnosing the root causes of health IT problems, prioritizing hazards for remediation, and developing feasible and locally relevant solutions.

ECRI Institute PSO, a federally certified Patient Safety Organization, supports numerous state-based PSO programs as well as hospitals, health systems, and other provider organizations nationwide. It has conducted in-depth research on health IT-related safety events and has convened the Partnership for Promoting Health IT Patient Safety, a multi-stakeholder collaborative. For information about working with ECRI Institute PSO, visit

For more information about Patient Safety: Making Healthcare Safer - Health IT Challenges and Solutions, visit the website, contact ECRI Institute by e-mail at; by telephone at (610) 825-6000, ext. 5891; by fax at (610) 834-1275; or by mail at 5200 Butler Pike, Plymouth Meeting, PA 19462.

Also visit ECRI Institute’s Health IT Resource Center for access to free tools and analyses produced by ECRI Institute and its affiliated organizations.


For more information, contact:
Laurie Menyo, Director of Public Relations and Marketing Communications
(610) 825-6000, ext. 5310