Patient safety

A Year of Cleaner and Safer Care

Geneva, Switzerland
10 November 2006

As a follow-up to the launch of the first Global Patient Safety Challenge "Clean Care is Safer Care" in October 2005, a one-year-on meeting was organized by the WHO World Alliance for Patient Safety at the Palais des Nations, Geneva, on 10 November 2006. The meeting announced progress made worldwide since the launch of the Global Patient Safety Challenge.

The event aimed to:

  • highlight the achievements of WHO Member States that have signed a statement committing to address health care-associated infection
  • encourage more Member States to commit to addressing this problem.

A total of 22 countries representing 55% of the world’s population have signed on to the Global Patient Safety Challenge since it was launched. On 10 November, 13 more countries — Australia, Belgium, Bhutan, Bulgaria, Costa Rica, Germany, Kenya, Finland, Luxembourg, Singapore, Sudan, Uganda and the United States— pledged commitment to the initiative. Seven countries and regions — Bangladesh, Hong Kong SAR, Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) States, Ireland, Italy, Scotland, Spain— reported on their first year of achievements.

"Clean Care is Safer Care" screen saver

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The event, chaired by Sir Liam Donaldson, Chair of the World Alliance for Patient Safety, included keynote speeches by academics, WHO staff and thirteen Ministers of Health, or their representatives who presented signed statements pledging to support health care-associated infection in their countries. The high-level speakers were: Mr M. di Bartolomeo, Minister of Health, Luxembourg; Ms J. Halton, Secretary for the Department of Health and Ageing, Australia; Dr L. J. Singay, Minister of Health, Bhutan; Dr Yolande Husden, Ministry of Social Affairs, Public Health and the Environment, Belgium;
Dr M. L. Avila-Agüero, Minister of Health, Costa Rica;
Ms M. Caspers-Merk, Parliamentary State Secretary, Germany;
Mrs C.K. Ngilu, Minister of Health, Kenya; Dr T. Botros Shokai, Federal Minister of Health, Sudan; Dr S. Mallinga, Minister of Health, Uganda.

Messages of support for the "Clean Care is Safer Care" initiative and signed statements were also presented by the Ms L. Hyssälä, Minister of Health and Social Services of Health, Finland and
Dr C. Clancy, Director of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, on behalf of the United States Department of Health and Human Services. In addition, Mr P. Draganov, Ambassador, Permanent Mission of the Republic of Bulgaria and Professor Chew Suok Kai, Deputy Director of Medical Services, of Singapore presented their country statements.

The Palais des Nations site video-linked with sites in Hong Kong, SAR; Dhaka, Bangladesh; New Delhi, India; Rhiyad, Saudi Arabia; Dublin, Ireland; Scotland, UK; Madrid, Spain; and Geneva, Switzerland.

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