July 18, 2023
More than 1,100 surgeons, nurses, data registrars, and other members of hospital surgical quality teams attended the 2023 ACS Quality and Safety Conference, which took place July 10-13 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
L’Etoile du Nord, French for “the star of north,” is Minnesota’s state motto and “emblematic of what you all do every single day as we try to achieve quality—we head toward that North Star,” said Clifford Y. Ko, MD, MS, MSHS, FACS, FASCRS, Director of the ACS Division of Research and Optimal Patient Care, in his introduction to the conference.
Highlights of the Quality and Safety Conference included advice from Patricia L. Turner, MD, MBA, FACS, ACS Executive Director & CEO, to move beyond simply “admiring” a problem and instead working to resolve it.
“Action is key to leading,” Dr. Turner said, “and admiration is an impediment to action. We can admire a problem to death, but that alone won’t lead to addressing it.”
In a moving conference Keynote Address, Oluwaferanmi O. Okanlami, MD, MS, a physician and former orthopaedic surgery resident who is paralyzed from the chest down, discussed how accommodating disability is a necessary part of equity.
For Dr. Okanlami, his neck injury was a role reversal. “Despite being a physician at this point and surgical resident who took care of people with disabilities…I hadn’t recognized how inaccessible our world and our healthcare system are for individuals with disabilities,” he said.
In addition to dozens of breakout sessions covering specific topics, other General Sessions focused on the recently launched Power of Quality campaign, capturing and responding to the patient voice, leadership in surgery, and the importance of equity for both advancing workplace culture and patient outcomes, and more.