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Qual Saf Health Care 15:i50-i58 doi:10.1136/qshc.2005.015842
  • Safety by design

Work system design for patient safety: the SEIPS model

  1. P Carayon1,2,
  2. A Schoofs Hundt2,
  3. B-T Karsh1,2,
  4. A P Gurses5,
  5. C J Alvarado2,
  6. M Smith2,4,
  7. P Flatley Brennan1,2,3
  1. 1Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, College of Engineering, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, Wisconsin, USA
  2. 2Center for Quality and Productivity Improvement, College of Engineering, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, Wisconsin, USA
  3. 3School of Nursing, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, Wisconsin, USA
  4. 4Department of Population Health Sciences, School of Medicine and Public Health, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, Wisconsin, USA
  5. 5Department of Anesthesiology, University of Maryland, Baltimore, Maryland, USA
  1. Correspondence to:
 Professor P Carayon
 Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, Center for Quality and Productivity Improvement, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI 53726, USA; carayon{at}engr.wisc.edu
  • Accepted 2 September 2006

Abstract

Models and methods of work system design need to be developed and implemented to advance research in and design for patient safety. In this paper we describe how the Systems Engineering Initiative for Patient Safety (SEIPS) model of work system and patient safety, which provides a framework for understanding the structures, processes and outcomes in health care and their relationships, can be used toward these ends. An application of the SEIPS model in one particular care setting (outpatient surgery) is presented and other practical and research applications of the model are described.

Footnotes

  • Funding for this research was provided by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality Grant # P20 HS11561-01.

  • Competing interests: none.

  • An earlier version of this paper was presented at the Organizational Design and Management Conference, 2003 (Carayon P, Alvarado CJ, Brennan P, et al. Work system and patient safety. In: Luczak H, Zink KJ, eds. Human factors in organizational design and management—VII. Santa Monica, CA: IEA Press, 2003:583–9).