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Posted 6 Nov 2013 in Healthcare Associated Infections

West Coast District Health Board (DHB) is hosting a stand tomorrow to raise awareness of the new national patient safety campaign Open for better care and give people a chance to ask questions or discuss their ideas with friendly and knowledgable staff from both the DHB and the Health Quality & Safety Commission.

The campaign has recently changed its focus to reducing harm from surgical site infections (SSIs), involving surgical wounds in patients following surgery.

The purpose of the promotion is to raise awareness of Open and promote simple interventions to reduce SSIs. While SSIs are the campaign’s current area of focus, the other three focus areas – falls, surgery and medication – will also be promoted.

“West Coast DHB is pleased to host a stand to profile our involvement in the national patient safety campaign,” says Michael Frampton, West Coast DHB Programme Director.

Approximately two to five percent of patients having surgery develop a surgical site infection, which can cause life-threatening illnesses, long-term disability, longer stays in hospital, and emotional and financial stress.

“Reducing the number of SSIs in our hospitals is a key priority for our DHB. Open for better care has allowed us to bring a focus to the great patient safety work already underway on the West Coast, and provides us with an opportunity to build on that work,” says Mr Frampton.

South Island DHBs are working on a combined regional approach which includes all the region’s DHBs, and are fully committed to improving outcomes for patients and communities across the region.

A pledge supporting the campaign has recently been signed by the DHB’s board chair Dr Paul McCormack and chief executive officer David Meates.

The stand will be open at the main entrance of Grey Base Hospital tomorrow from 10am to 2pm.

For more information on Open for better care visit