The World Patient Safety Day builds on a successful series of Global Ministerial Summits on Patient Safety pioneered in 2016 at London as well as relentless advocacy by leaders from all sectors – politicians, patient champions, patient safety experts and global public health leaders. The establishment of an annual World Patient Safety Day will give an opportunity to providers, seekers and managers of health care services to join a platform and express solidarity and compassion to make health care safer.
The origin of the day is firmly grounded in the fundamental principle of medicine – First, to do no harm.
For World Patient Safety Day, 17 September 2021, WHO urges all stakeholders to “Act now for safe and respectful childbirth!” with the theme “Safe maternal and newborn care”. Approximately 810 women die every day from preventable causes related to pregnancy and childbirth. In addition, around 7000 newborns die every day, amounting to 47% of all under-5 deaths. Moreover, about 2 million babies are stillborn every year, with over 40% occurring during labour. Considering the significant burden of risks and harm women and newborns are exposed to due to unsafe care, compounded by the disruption of essential health services caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the campaign is even more important this year.
Fortunately, the majority of stillbirths and maternal and newborn deaths are avoidable through the provision of safe and quality care by skilled health professionals working in supportive environments. This can only be achieved through the engagement of all stakeholders and the adoption of comprehensive health systems and community-based approaches.
World Patient Safety Day was established in 2019 to enhance global understanding of patient safety, increase public engagement in the safety of health care and promote global actions to enhance patient safety and reduce patient harm.
Objectives of World Patient Safety Day 2021:
Lightening up prominent monuments for WPSD
During the continuing challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, a combination of virtual and other activities are being planned by WHO to observe and celebrate the Day in September 2021. The signature mark of the global campaign is to light up iconic monuments, landmarks, and public places in the colour orange.
WHO calls upon all stakeholders – governments, nongovernmental organizations, professional organizations, civil society, patient organizations, academia and research institutes – to join the global campaign by lighting up iconic monuments in orange, and organizing international, national and local activities and events on and around 17 September 2021.
Further information can be found here:
The WHO offers also a broad range of campaign materials such as posters, campaign logo, templates for roll-ups and social media frames.
Please visit the WHO campaign site for further information.
Events & Lightening up monuments around the World on Patient Safety Day 2019 & 2020
Photo credits: © Nagwa Metwally; Yakob Seman; Joychakr; Nor’Aishah Abu Bakar; M.Zingl I Charité; Bundesministerium für Gesundheit I Gabriela Girnau und Ingo Härtel; KVWL; APS