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The Zero Harm Blueprint

We believe that reaching a better state of health in South Carolina requires an absolute commitment to safety. That is why we encourage our hospitals to make their goal simple–zero harm.

Achieving zero harm in the healthcare setting is challenging. Delivering consistent results in a complex, high-risk environment like an operating room does not just happen. It requires a deeply embedded commitment to patient safety that runs through the entire organization.

That belief is why SCHA launched the Zero Harm Blueprint in 2018—to help hospitals assess and acknowledge the foundational elements of a zero harm culture.

Based on the American College of Healthcare Executives and the IHI/NPSF Lucian Leape Institute’s “Leading a Culture of Safety: A Blueprint for Success,” this new approach takes aim at the leadership-based benchmarks that are essential on the journey to high reliability but are often at least one step removed from clinical practice. The Blueprint will be focused on six key domains detailed in the following pages: Vision for Safety, Trust & Respect, Board Engagement, Leadership Development, Just Culture, and Behavioral Expectations.

It is our hope that the Blueprint will aid our member hospitals in creating highly reliable organizations by providing a comprehensive framework for creating and sustaining a culture of safety. By working together, South Carolina hospitals can and will be the safest in the country.

A brief guide to the Blueprint is available here. The full Blueprint is downloadable here.

For more information on the Zero Harm Blueprint, contact Nan Carter at