Patient safety symposium: Challenges and opportunities for the improvement of health systems

Digital Health Luminaries & Physicians from the U.S., UK, & Spain to Convene in Boston

BOSTON and MADRID, January 23, 2020 – The nonprofit Foundation for the Innovation and Development of Health Safety (FIDHS) today announced the speaker lineup for the inaugural “Patient Safety in a Digital World” symposium to be held next week on January 28th at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in the Yawkey Center for Cancer Care.

“We’re thrilled to host this important discussion in the medical mecca of Boston,” said Tom Arneman, Program Chair, Patient Safety in a Digital World Symposium. “Our featured speakers from the U.S. and across the pond bring an international flavor to the global issue of patient safety including new considerations brought about by digital innovation”.

According to WHO, in high income countries, it is estimated that 1 in 10 patients is harmed while receiving hospital care, with 50% of those incidents being preventable. In low- and middle- income countries, 134 million adverse events occur in hospitals resulting in 2.6 million deaths each year. Globally, as many as 4 in 10 patients are harmed in primary and outpatient health care settings with up to 80% of harm being preventable.

“I’m particularly excited about this symposium in its singular focus on patient safety, which is a global health concern” said Jennifer Goldsack, Executive Director, Digital Medicine Society (DiMe). “Digital technologies are poised to improve patient safety, however, they must be carefully designed with the patient at the center to protect privacy and address other security issues.”

Official Speaker Lineup#PatientSafetyBoston

Welcome & Overview

  • Ed Morata, Chairman & Cofounder, FIDHS
  • Jose Ignacio Echaniz, MD, Cofounder, FIDHS

Opening Remarks

  • Sara Silacci, Director, Strategic Alliance Initiative, Center for Innovation in Digital Healthcare (CIDH), Mass General Hospital. Sara works right at the convergence between healthcare and technology, helping MGH establish partnerships aimed at innovating patient-centered digital solutions.

Patient Safety Panel Discussion

  • Emily Riemer, Moderator, Anchor/Medical Reporter for WCVB-TV Boston
  • Carlos Mur de Viu, MD, PhD, General Director, Social & Health Coordination, Madrid Health Service (SERMAS)
  • Thais C. Morata, PhD, Senior Researcher, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) - Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
  • Sylvie Tomczyk, MD, PhD, Head of Drug Safety & Pharmacoviligance, Cyclerion 
  • Meghana C. Karande, MD, Director, GoInvo

Case Study: Quantified Safety in the Oncology Pharmacy

Fireside Chat: Redefining Patient Safety in the Digital Era

Digital Disruption Panel Discussion

  • Rick Berke, Moderator, Co-founder & Executive Editor, STAT
  • Kathleen McGrow, DNP, Chief Nursing Information Officer, Microsoft
  • Jenni West, Associate Director of Digital Change, Innovation Agency, NHS
  • Luba Greenwood, JD, Professor, Harvard School of Engineering & Applied Sciences
  • Laurance Stuntz, Director, Massachusetts eHealth Institute (MeHI)

Closing Remarks

  • Robert K. Coughlin, President & CEO, Massachusetts Biotechnology Council (MassBio). Bob is at the helm of the Bay State’s trade organization that represents 1,200 life sciences companies. In 2019, he launched a digital health arm to support biotech companies achieve their digital transformation

The Foundation will release its first white paper focused on the three most common incidences of medical errors at the January 28th symposium.


With operations in Madrid and Boston, the Foundation was established in 2019 to the advance the overall quality, safety, and delivery of patient care. The Foundation’s primary focus is on supporting and innovating digital solutions that eliminate preventable medical errors in hospitals and health systems across the U.S. and Internationally. According to the CDC, adverse drug events are a serious public health problem: 82% of American adults take at least one medication and ADEs cause approximately 1.3 million emergency department visits and 350,000 hospitalizations each year, costing the healthcare industry $3.5 billion in excess medical costs. In addition to improving the quality and safety of medication management, the Foundation is dedicated to preventing adverse events from surgical procedures, hospital acquired infections, and misdiagnoses. For more info visit

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