Sidra’s Dr. Timothy McDonald involved in WHO patient safety and quality leadership initiative

Sidra’s Service Chief for Anesthesiology, Dr. Timothy McDonald, has been invited to take part in the first global experts’ consultation for the development of the World Health Organization (WHO) Leaders’ Guide on Patient Safety and Quality of Care in Service Delivery. The Leaders’ Guide is being developed by the WHO to address the global need for strengthening leadership capacity to deliver safe and quality health services. The consultation, which will take place at WHO headquarters in Geneva on the 20-21 March 2014, will be attended by 20  experts in the areas of health care management, financing, patient safety and quality of care.


“Patient safety and quality of care are top priorities for Sidra and I commend the WHO for launching this timely initiative,” said Dr. McDonald. “The development of the Leaders’ Guide has the potential to have a significant positive impact on safety and quality in the delivery of patient care as well as to promote the importance of leadership in this area. I am delighted to have the opportunity to participate in the experts’ consultation and look forward to discussing the content and development of the Guide with my fellow contributors.”


A global approach to safety and quality

The WHO notes that although initiatives to address the safety and quality challenges of health-service delivery from a leadership perspective exist in many resource-rich countries, there is currently no single comprehensive initiative to address this at the global level.


“This Leaders’ Guide is dealing with the two areas that matter most to patients and which are top of mind for leaders in institutions around the world. By drawing together the many strands that contribute to safety and quality and putting a strong emphasis on the role that leadership can play in improving their delivery, the initiative will provide leaders with the tools they need to elevate standards. I hope it will also trigger new research in this field,” commented Dr. McDonald.


Dr. McDonald is a pediatric anesthesiologist and also holds a degree in law. He is a national figure in the United States in patient safety and the delivery of high quality patient care. Prior to joining Sidra, Dr. McDonald was Chief Safety and Risk Officer for Health Affairs at the University of Illinois, Professor of Anesthesiology and Pediatrics at the University of Illinois College of Medicine at Chicago and Adjunct Professor or Law at Loyola University School of Law. His research, in part funded by the U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), has been published and presented widely.


Goals of the WHO initiative

The goals of the WHO Leaders’ Guide on Patient Safety and Quality of Care are to:

  • Address the global need for organizational/leadership education and training in patient safety and quality improvement
  • Raise the international profile of the importance of leadership for safe and high quality service delivery
  • Inform health-care leadership about the key areas in patient safety and quality improvement
  • Engage leadership to support patient safety and quality improvements in their organizations
  • Provide guidance and tools to develop leaders’ competencies in patient safety and quality improvement
  • Enhance patient safety and quality as a theme throughout health-care management curricula
  • Foster international collaboration and research in this area


Find out more about the Leaders’ Guide and the expert consultation here: