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SEATTLE – (Jan. 29, 2016) – Virginia Mason Chairman and CEO Gary S. Kaplan, MD, will co-chair a new initiative by the American College of Healthcare Executives and the National Patient Safety Foundation’s Lucian Leape Institute to develop a playbook designed to help leaders create and sustain the type of culture necessary to advance patient and workforce safety.

Joining Dr. Kaplan as co-chair is Charles D. Stokes, executive vice president and chief operating officer at Memorial Hermann Health System in Houston.

“The best medical outcomes come from the safest environments,” said Dr. Kaplan, who is also chair of the Lucian Leape Institute. “Quality comes from a relentless focus on improving all aspects of patient care, from service to outcomes to safety, at every touch point for every patient.”

The safety culture handbook is planned for release in 2017. Click here to read the news release from the American College of Healthcare Executives and the Lucian Leape Institute.

Virginia Mason has been recognized as one of the safest hospitals in the United States for 10 consecutive years by The Leapfrog Group, an independent alliance of businesses that advocates for improved quality, safety and transparency in health care.

About Virginia Mason
Virginia Mason, founded in 1920, is a nonprofit regional health care system based in Seattle that serves the Pacific Northwest. In the Puget Sound region, the system includes 336-bed Virginia Mason Hospital; a primary and specialty care group practice of more than 480 physicians; regional medical centers in Seattle, Bainbridge Island, Bellevue, Federal Way, Kirkland, Issaquah and Lynnwood; Bailey-Boushay House, the first skilled-nursing and outpatient chronic care management program in the U.S. designed and built specifically to meet the needs of people with HIV/AIDS; Benaroya Research Institute, which is internationally recognized for autoimmune disease research; and Virginia Mason Institute, which trains health care professionals and others from around the world in the Virginia Mason Production System, an innovative management methodology for continually improving quality, safety and efficiency. Virginia Mason online:

Virginia Mason also includes Yakima-based Memorial Family of Services and Yakima Valley Memorial Hospital, a 226-bed facility serving the Yakima Valley in Central Washington since 1950. Memorial Family of Services comprises primary care practices and specialty care services, including high quality cardiac care, a continuum of cancer care, hospice care, and advanced services for children with special health care needs. Memorial online:

Media Contact:
Gale Robinette
Media Relations Manager
Virginia Mason Health System
(206) 341-1509

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