World Patient Safety Day 2021: History and Significance Amid COVID-19

The World Patient Safety Day is marked worldwide on September 17 to raise global awareness about patient safety and to encourage individuals to demonstrate their commitment to making healthcare safer. The day is celebrated by WHO and its international partners. This day’s observation is especially important during a coronavirus outbreak when medical personnel and other COVID-19 warriors are working tirelessly to save lives and stop the spread of the deadly infection.

World Patient Safety Day 2021: History

The 72nd World Health Assembly established World Patient Safety Day in May 2019 with the adoption of Resolution WHA72.6 on “Global action on patient safety” and permission for the Day to be held annually on September 17. World Patient Safety Day is the capstone of a successful series of yearly Global Ministerial Summits on Patient Safety that began in 2016 in London.

World Patient Safety Day 2021: Theme and Significance

On World Patient Safety Day 2021, with the theme “Safe maternity and newborn care,” WHO encourages all stakeholders to “Act now for safe and compassionate delivery!”

Every day, around 810 women die from avoidable causes connected to pregnancy and delivery, according to WHO data. Furthermore, around 6700 infants die every day, accounting for 47 percent of all fatalities among children under the age of five. Also, around 2 million babies are stillborn each year, with over 40% happening during labour. It’s a realisation of the magnitude of the harm caused by medical errors that should have been avoided.

The campaign is even more critical this year, given the substantial danger and suffering that women and infants face as a result of improper treatment, compounded by the interruption of key health services caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

World Patient Safety Day 2021: Objectives

This day’s major objective is to minimise unnecessary risks and damage to all women and newborns during labour and delivery, as well as to advocate for the provision of quality services at the point of care.

It also strives to improve maternal and newborn safety by bringing together a wide range of stakeholders and implementing effective and innovative solutions. WHO calls on all stakeholders to take urgent and long-term actions to scale up efforts, reach the unreachable, and provide safe maternal and newborn care, particularly during childbirth.

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