Obstetrical team-building program honors Oaklawn’s training achievement

MARSHALL – An international patient-safety organization honored Oaklawn Hospital on Friday for completing the second of three arduous steps in its stringent training program.

A presentation at the hospital recognized the obstetrics staff’s completion of the second module of Managing Obstetrical Risk Efficiently, or MOREOB, a program developed by the Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists of Canada and the Healthcare Insurance Reciprocal of Canada.

On behalf of the 40 participants from Oaklawn, Sara Birch, director of the Oaklawn’s Birth Center, on Friday received a plaque presented by Mary Ellen Filbey, the MOREOB program lead for the Risk Management and Patient Safety Institute.

“Oaklawn is a leader,” Filbey said. “They made this program their own. And this is a legacy. They’re going to make a direct impact on the state of Michigan.”



The program’s broad application, which began in Canada, has helped to improve medical results for mothers and babies by integrating evidenced-based best practices among physicians and nurses. The program has about 13,000 participants throughout North America, many of them at 17 hospitals in the United States, including Oaklawn, Filbey said.

“When lives are on the line, physicians and nurses need to be able to work effectively together,” said Sara Birch, director of the Oaklawn’s Birth Center. “When emergencies arise, split-second thinking and proper procedures are all-important.”

“This increases our emphasis on patient safety and gives us tools to concentrate on that goal, particularly in OB, which is a high-risk area to begin with,” said Rob Covert, the hospital’s CEO. “It’s also a proactive way for us to work collaboratively with our staff physicians.”

“When physicians and staff learn and train together to simulate real-life emergencies, the health-care team is better prepared for unexpected circumstances. That work helps improve teamwork and camaraderie,” Birch said.

Birth Center staff nurses Emily Parker, Donna Fausz and Laura Regas expressed deep appreciation for the training, pointing to the program’s focus on teamwork and communication, relationship-building between nurses and physicians and efforts to increase patient safety through skills drills, workshops and an improved knowledge base.

“The MOREOB program is helping us all be on the lookout for important safety and risk factors,” she said, “and that fortifies our ability to provide safe and effective patient-centered care.”

Having completed two of the program’s modules, Oaklawn’s obstetrical physicians and nurses are gearing up to complete the third by 2013. The first module was completed in 2011.

The comprehensive professional development and performance improvement program is based on the proven principles of High Reliability Organizations, which include safety, effective communication, teamwork, decreased hierarchy in emergencies, practice for emergencies and reflective learning.


CAPTION: Members of Oaklawn Hospital’s obstetrics team gather as Sara Birch (center left, with scarf), director of the Oaklawn’s Birth Center, receives a plaque from Mary Ellen Filbey, the MOREOB program lead for the Risk Management and Patient Safety Institute, in recognition of the hospital staff’s completion of the second module of the Managing Obstetrical Risk Efficiently program. Standing at back left is Rob Covert, Oaklawn’s CEO.

(Standing from left: Pat Jendryka, Rob Covert, Dr. Neysa Bartlett, Kristin Sims, Sara Birch, Bonnie Edwards, Mary Ellen Filbey, Emily Parker, Laura Regas, Donna Fausz and Dr. Camille Fleming.

“Oaklawn Recognized by the Risk Management and Patient Safety Institute,” The County Journal, Vol. 7, No. 13, Saturday, June 16, 2012, p. 16.