Progress at the Intersection of Patient Safety and Medical Liability


U.S. health care leaders are continually working to improve care processes while advancing a medical liability system that better serves patients and providers. Doing so ensures patients are compensated fairly and in a timely manner and physicians feel confident in the tests they order and the care they provide.

In 2009, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services launched an initiative to help states and health care systems test models that improve patient safety, patient-doctor communication and medical-related compensation processes, while reducing liability premiums. The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) awarded $25 million for seven demonstration grants and 13 planning grants as part of this initiative.

In December 2016, Health Services Research (HSR) journal published a special issue to report on some of the most important findings available from the seven PSML (patient safety and medical liability) demonstration grants. The issue also previews tools developed as a part of the PSML effort and discusses key implementation challenges to replicating these innovations and similar future policy and clinical interventions.

This webinar is about AHRQ’s endeavors to study the progress of health care at the intersection of patient safety and medical liability.

During this webinar, participants learned:

  • The advancements and outputs of patient safety and medical liability research in recent years
  • The value of multicomponent interventions to improve perinatal and obstetric care outcomes for mothers and children
  • The role communication/disclosure and resolution programs can play in fostering patient safety improvements and supporting patient-centered care.


  • Moderator: Carolyn Clancy, M.D., deputy under secretary for health for organizational excellence, Veterans Health Administration
  • Jim Battles, Ph.D., former project officer of AHRQ’s Patient Safety and Medical Liability Initiative
  • William Riley, Ph.D., professor, School for the Science of Health Care Delivery, Arizona State University
  • Thomas H. Gallagher, M.D., professor and associate chair, Department of Medicine and professor, Department of Bioethics and Humanities, University of Washington

To view the presentation slides only click here.
To view an archive of the presentation, click view item below.

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