Staying Safe - Things Patients Can Do

Speak up if you have questions. Become involved in your care.UW Health knows that patient safety and quality care requires patients who are willing to be involved in their own care. There are many things that you as a patient can do to empower yourself when it comes to your own health care. You don't need a medical degree to become an active, involved and informed participant on your own health care team.


Speak Up Campaign


To help empower patients and to prevent health care errors, The Joint Commission and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) launched a national Speak Up campaign encouraging patients to do the following:

  • Speak up if you have questions or concerns - and if you don't understand, ask again. It's your body and you have a right to know.
  • Pay attention to the care you are receiving. Make sure you're getting the right treatments and medications by the right health care professionals. Don't assume anything.
  • Educate yourself about your diagnosis, the medical tests you are undergoing and your treatment plan.
  • Ask a trusted family member or friend to be your advocate.
  • Know what medications you take and why you take them. Medication errors are the most common health care errors.
  • Use a hospital, clinic, surgery center or other type of health care organization that has undergone a rigorous on-site evaluation against established state-of-the-art quality and safety standards, such as that provided by Joint Commission.
  • Participate in all decisions about your treatment. You are the center of the health care team.

Speak Up Videos