Program overview :

  • Safety Conversations Action Series

Frequently Asked Questions 

What is an Action Series?   

An action series is a four-month learning collaborative which will consist of three 90-minute learning sessions and two action periods with coaching, mentoring and peer-to-peer learning. The learning sessions are best described as workshops and idea exchange forums, which help prepare teams to take action during the action periods. During action periods participants work in their local areas (i.e. units/area of work) to apply what they learned during the learning sessions. We recognize the pressures on the health system are high right now, so we are designing this Action Series to be a light touch for a short duration.  The assigned actions will require minimal time and effort, but when carried out, will be rewarding and beneficial.   

What is the aim of the Action Series?  

The aim of this series is to empower people to integrate safety conversations into their everyday life and practice, thus improving safety for all.

What are the benefits of joining the Action Series?

  • Learn and apply a more comprehensive approach to safety.   
  • Learn about, and appreciate the value of having safety conversions 
  • Participate in peer-to-peer learning and network with colleagues from across Canada  
  • Work with faculty and coaches to successfully implement the safety conversions in your work  
  • Access, share, and adapt safety knowledge, tools, and resources within a learning network  
  • Improve your team’s approach to patient safety while taking action to deliver safer care. 

The principles of the Action Series include: 

  • Everyone teaches; everyone learns 
  • Accelerate movement between knowing and doing 
  • Learning sessions are a preparation for the action periods 
  • The more active your participation the better your results 
  • Data and information collected are fundamental to evaluating improvement 

Is there a fee to participate in the Action Series? 

There is no cost to participate and all teams that complete and submit an evaluation including a summary of their progress and lessons learned will receive a $100 gift card.   

Do I have to submit data and reports? 

Yes, but these will be minimal. Measurement and evaluation are fundamental to understanding if your work and our work is making a difference. For this Action Series there will be some requests to complete evaluation surveys. During the final action period, teams will be asked to submit a brief report (3-4 slides) highlighting actions taken and learnings gained.  You may be asked to share your report during the last learning session.   

Can I join in once the Action Series has started? 

No, the Action Series is a closed learning network because knowledge is cumulative across the duration of the learning sessions and action periods.   If there is interest and demand, HEC will explore the opportunity to repeat the Action Series. 

Do the same people need to attend all Learning Sessions? 

Yes, the core team should attend all learning sessions and take responsibility to ensure the work continues during action periods. The coaches and faculty will work closely with the core team to advance the learnings from learning sessions during the action periods.

What do I need to join the Action Series? 

  • Senior Leadership support 
  • A team with a commitment to advancing safe care for all 
  • Completed application
  • Computer and internet access 
  • Dedicated time and space to participate in the learning sessions and coaching calls 
  • Commitment to explore, test, and evaluate ideas for strengthening safety conversations

What is the role of the supporting Senior Leader? 

Support from a Senior Leader is key to a team’s success and their role may include: 

  • Helping to align the participation in the Action Series within the organization’s strategic and operational objectives 
  • Connecting and communicating with appropriate stakeholders 
  • Allocation of staff and resources to support participation in the Action Series activities 
  • Facilitating the work of the team within the larger organization and particularly seeking opportunities for spread and sustainability of the learnings from the Action Series 
  • Engaging with the team members and protecting their time required for successful completion of the Action Series 

Who should join this Action Series? 

This Action Series is most applicable to teams that are seeking to expand their understanding and approach to safety improvement.  Recognizing that the current approach to patient safety is focused on past harm, this Action Series will introduce a holistic view of safety, that we call the Presence of Safety. It will be the initial steps for teams to take towards fostering a culture where safety conversations are normalized, and staff, patients, residents and their care partners feel safe to speak up.   

Who guides the content of this initiative?  

The Action Series design and implementation will be guided by experienced coaches from Healthcare Excellence Canada along with expert faculty and patient partners. The content is developed based on evidence, best practices, expert opinion and learnings from past safety collaboratives. Although this is a structured process, we will remain flexible and responsive to our participants. Our primary goal is to work with you to create an initiative that helps you advance your understanding of safety and apply that understanding to your safety conversations.   

Is enrolment limited? 

Yes, enrolment will be limited to 20 teams for healthcare organizations across Canada. If there is demand, HEC will explore offering a second phase.   

Will the Action Series be offered in both French and English Languages? 

Yes, all printed materials, learning sessions and coaching calls will be offered in both French and English.  

Want to learn more? 

Attend our webinar and panel discussion “Now is the time to press play on safety conversations” on Oct 25, 2022 at noon EST.  This session will offer a deeper dive into safety conversations and provide information about the Action Series.

What is the Measurement and Monitoring of Safety Framework (MMSF)?  

Participants in the Action Series will be introduced to the MMSF to help broaden and expand our understanding of safety.  The MMSF consists of five dimensions that prompt you with key questions to address any problem you have in safety.  

  • PAST HARM: Has patient care been safe in the past? 
  • RELIABILITY: Are our clinical systems and processes reliable? 
  • SENSITIVITY TO OPERATIONS: Is care safe today? 
  • ANTICIPATION AND PREPAREDNESS: Will care be safe in the future? 
  • INTEGRATION AND LEARNING: Are we responding and improving? 

Watch a video where participants from past MMSF collaboratives share their views and experiences on applying the Framework to their work.

"I would say that in a very difficult time in healthcare [the MMSF] has brought a very positive change in the culture in our department. It has brought a vibrancy and a degree of engagement that we haven't seen in a very long time," says Dr. Jan Sommers, Nova Scotia Health Authority. 

How to apply to participate in the Action Series? 

Complete the online application.  The deadline for the application is November 9, 2022.  

Need additional information? 

For additional information about the upcoming panel discussion or the Action Series please contact the planning team at