UCL Institute of Health Informatics


Patient Safety

This module provides an applied overview of the field of patient safety drawing on this multidisciplinary literature. The function of patient safety will be explored, and we will look at the stages of measuring harm, understanding the causes, identifying solutions, evaluating the impact and translating evidence into safer care. We will encourage you to look critically at research that has applied models and techniques in a healthcare setting and to think about how you can apply your ideas to your own work environment.

Module code


UCL credits


Course Length

9 Weeks

Face to Face Dates

Wk 4: 17 – 19 March 2021

Assessment Dates

04 May 2021

Module organiser

Ms Pippa Bark-Williams Please direct queries to courses-IHI@ucl.ac.uk

Who can study this course?

MSc/Dip Health Informatics students, other UCL MSc/PG Dip/PG Cert students, taster course students, short course students.

MSc/PG Dip/PG Cert students: Open to all UCL MSc/PG Dip/PG Cert Health Informatics, and to any UCL MSc/PG Dip/PG Cert students in a relevant subject.

Taster students: UK Bachelor’s degree in a relevant/allied subject awarded with a 1st or upper 2nd class Honours or an equivalent qualification.  Two academic or professional reference letters.

Short course students: Professional work experience in any health relevant area and/or UK Bachelor’s degree in a relevant/allied subject awarded with a 1st or 2 class Honours or an equivalent qualification.

In addition to the above all students must demonstrate a good standard of English Proficiency with 6.5.

A minimum of an upper second-class Bachelor's degree in a relevant discipline from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard. Students who do not meet these requirements but have appropriate professional experience will also be considered. Students who have previously undertaken CPD may apply for accreditation of prior learning.)


    • Adverse incidents
    • Medical records and information management
    • The roles and responsibilities of healthcare professionals
    • The application of principles to assess risk exposures associated with clinical practice
    • Issues around new technology and its adoption and
    • Information systems to support risk management and patient safety

      Teaching and learning methods

      Blended learning: web-based distance learning in the UCL Virtual Learning Environment plus a 3-day face-to-face teaching session.


      Summative assessment: Written report worth 100% of the overall module mark.

      Selected reading list

      Vincent, C, Amalberti, R (2016) Safer Healthcare: Strategies for the Real World. Springerlink openaccess.

      Flin, R, O'Connor P, Crichton, M (2008) Safety at the Sharp End: A Guide to Non-Technical Skills. Ashgate, Hampshire.

      Reynard, J, Renolds, J, Stevenson, P (2009) In Practical Patient Safety. OUP, Oxford.