The Australian Patient Safety Foundation Inc. (APSF) is a non-profit independent organisation dedicated to advancing patient safety.
The APSF has provided leadership in the reduction of harm to patients in all healthcare environments since 1988. Based in Adelaide, South Australia, the APSF works with Commonwealth and State governments, researchers, professional organisations, Colleges, healthcare professionals and consumers at the national and international level to improve outcomes for patients.
The APSF developed the AIMSTM (Advanced Incident Management System) software, which helps to collect and analyse detailed information about healthcare incidents using a classification based on our understanding of iatrogenic harm and the things that can go wrong in healthcare. AIMSTM is used across several Australian states and a number of international jurisdictions. The APSF continues to work on patient safety classifications, and has been an important contributor to the World Health Organisation - Patient Safety project to develop an International Classification for Patient Safety. Other core activities of the APSF include: research and consultancies around patient safety; collaborations for translating evidence into practice; education and training of healthcare professionals in patient safety; organising, promoting and co-ordinating incident reporting studies; promoting patient safety lectures and symposia; and to act as a clearing house for patient safety publications and analysis. The APSF is collaborating with the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Radiologists to provide a Medical Imaging incident reporting system - the Radiology Events Register (RaER) - and to improve safety and quality through developing a culture of learning from patient safety incidents. Similarly, the APSF has recently commenced work on a project to set up and test another specialty-specific incident reporting system the Emergency Medicine Event Register (EMER) with the Australasian College for Emergency Medicine.
The APSF is guided by a Constitution and governed by a Council. Long term Council President Professor Bill Runciman was instrumental in setting up the APSF, following collaboration with like-minded anaesthetists from around Australasia in the mid 1980s. Professor Jeffrey Braithwaite became APSF Chairman in 2008 and, among other activities, is Founding Director of the Australian Institute of Health Innovation. In 2011, Professor Braithwaite resigned as ASPF Chairman and the role is now filled by Associate Professor Matthew Thomas, Director of Westwood-Thomas Associates.
The APSF receives no ongoing Government support but is funded through memberships, consultancies and research grants. Located within the University of South Australia, APSF has strong links with local, national and international healthcare organisations.