Safe From Harm (Cardiothoracic Care) HEA3132


This module has been designed in partnership with the Liverpool Heart & Chest Hospital, NHS Foundation Trust to support staff in the development of their knowledge pertaining to patient safety and the prevention of harm. The module aims to equip staff, as part of the wider multi-disciplinary workforce, with an understanding of national drivers in patient safety and local 'safe from harm' initiatives. It also seeks to develop staff in acknowledging common risks in practice, planning their avoidance and managing risk to avoid complication through appropriate action planning.

Module Code: HEA3132
Level: 6
Credits: 10
Cost: £360 for Sept 2019 to July 2020

Who is this module for?

The teaching and learning strategies used within this module will be based on face-to-face delivery, to include a combination of lead lectures, supported by seminars and practical workshops, in which 'cases' and policy will be deconstructed, synthesised and reconstructed, in order to develop action plans and innovative dissemination strategies to support applied risk management processes. Delivery will be directed towards an understanding of the wider context of patient safety with a channelling of consideration of the importance of local safe from harm initiatives. As part of the facilitation strategies to support learning, students will actively review patient safety incidents, with the intention of producing a 'learning artefact' or an action plan to reduce risk re-occurrence. This will support a developing understanding of risk stratification and the consequent need for communicating and disseminating new findings and perspectives. In part, this process, will be supported through consideration of incident reporting processes at local and Trust level.

The practitioners who access this module will be encouraged to draw on a range of experiential knowledge of management of risk of various types and at differing levels. The module will aim, therefore, to foster student-centred approaches to teaching and learning, in particular, problem-solving activities as related to situated management of risk, group work and peer review of debate. Critical thinking and enquiry will be encouraged and supported through seminars, workshops and self-directed learning.

Face-to-face classroom-based activities will be enhanced by the use of appropriate technologies to support learning.

What are the key aims of the programme?

At its core, the NHS remains a world leading example of commitment to health and health care as a human right. Events in mid-Staffs (Francis, 2013), have triggered a need to re-examine what the NHS does and determine how it can prevent harm and uphold patient safety (Berwick, 2013; Keough, 2013). Whilst it is acknowledged that not all harm is avoidable, there is an expectation that those incidents that do occur are stratified and actioned to prevent reoccurrence. Liverpool Heart & Chest Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, in its drive to uphold patient safety, acknowledge the necessity to foster 'never events' and support staff in their ability to safeguard those cardiothoracic patients under their care. As a result, this module is designed to support staff in their understanding in the wider context of patient safety/protection from harm, with the intent to equip practitioners with the skills to prevent and review incidents and develop action plans to prevent reoccurrences.

What will I study?

• Factors that contribute to patient safety;
• - Cause/nature of patient harm;
• - Pathways of care for the four harms - pressure ulcers, falls, CA-UTI's and VTE;
• - Models for improvement;
• - National drivers in patient safety;
• - Safe from harm initiatives;
• - Human error;
• - Risk stratification and risk management;
• - Patient incidences;
• - Incident reporting;
• - Action planning to avoid risk;
• - Communication in risk management.

How will I be assessed?

The formative assessment approaches adopt a deliberate interprofessional approach. In the context of discussion-based workshops and seminars, students will be encouraged to collectively analyse patient safety incidents in order to critically reflect on their own practice and that of the interprofessional team. A variety of case scenarios, previous action plans, workbooks and presentations will provide support material, whilst practitioners will be encouraged to construct a response to justify their approach to risk prevention.

These structured, guided conversations and peer discussions will generate self-assessment opportunities, which could inform the development of the final summatively assessed work.

Either an action plan to minimise future reoccurrence of risk, or a learning artefact/object to disseminate understanding and management of risk, will be offered with the intent of avoiding reoccurrence in the future. (2000 words)

On successful completion you will:

• Critically evaluate the current macro, meso and micro drivers in patient safety across the NHS.
• Critically analyse an identified patient safety incident, in order to minimise risk reoccurrence and disseminate understanding.

Study Dates and Venues

Further Information

Module availability varies from year to year and will be subject to minimum student numbers being achieved. Places will be allocated on a first come first served basis. Due to the popularity of some modules it may be that the module is fully booked when your application is received. We will include your details on a waiting list and allocate you a place on the next available intake.

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For further information regarding module content, please contact Module Coordinators Jeannette Ellis on 01695 657025 or email or Justine Brislen on 0151 600 1686 or email


This module can be studied on a stand alone basis. It is an optional module on the