SHM is committed to advancing quality. Intrinsic to the “culture of quality” is the commitment to honesty, transparency, and ethics. Any permutation of the society that does not fully exemplify these standards will be ineffective in accomplishing our wished-for goal. In short, the actions of the society must model those that we wish to inspire in the day-to-day practice of our members. Although the unprecedented growth of the society is responsible for errors in the past, the importance of admitting our shortcomings is no less significant. We’ve had some missteps along the way, and while these mistakes are a product of events preceding my tenure, it does not matter. As president of the organization, I am taking responsibility for them, with a pledge to devote all time and energy, with all due speed, to finding systematic solutions that will prevent these errors from happening again.
And let me be even more honest. As we go forward, there are probably going to be more missteps; such is the nature of a growing and active organization. I cannot promise an error-free organization, but I can promise that if and when errors are made in the future, the same intensity will be applied to seek systematic solutions to ensure that we continue to evolve in becoming an organization that is emblematic of quality. Such is the promise of SHM; such is the promise of the hospitalist. TH
Dr. Wiese is president of SHM.
- Kohn LT, Corrigan JM, Donaldson MS, et al. To Err Is Human: Building a Safer Health System. Washington, D.C.: National Academies Press; 2000.
- Institute of Medicine Committee on Quality Health Care in America. Crossing the Quality Chasm: A New Health System for the 21st Century. Washington, D.C.: National Academies Press; 2001.