METHODS: Using the Hospital Survey on Patient Safety Culture (HSOPSC), we measured resident and fellow perceptions of patient safety culture in 50 graduate medical education programs at 10 hospitals within an integrated health system. As institution-specific physician scores were not available, resident and fellow scores on the HSOPSC were compared with national data from 29 162 practicing providers at 543 hospitals.
RESULTS: Of the 1337 residents and fellows surveyed, 955 (71.4%) responded. Compared with national practicing providers, trainees had lower perceptions of patient safety culture in 6 of 12 domains, including teamwork within units, organizational learning, management support for patient safety, overall perceptions of patient safety, feedback and communication about error, and communication openness. Higher perceptions were observed for manager/supervisor actions promoting patient safety and for staffing. Perceptions equaled national norms in 4 domains. Perceptions of patient safety culture did not improve with advancing postgraduate year.
BACKGROUND: The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education has begun to evaluate teaching institutions' learning environments with Clinical Learning Environment Review visits, including trainee involvement in institutions' patient safety and quality improvement efforts.
OBJECTIVE: We sought to address the dearth of metrics that assess trainee patient safety perceptions of the clinical environment.
CONCLUSIONS: Trainees in a large integrated health system have variable perceptions of patient safety culture, as compared with national norms for some practicing providers. Administration of the HSOPSC was feasible and acceptable to trainees, and may be used to track perceptions over time.