Ray Valek Contributes to Alerts About Health Care Risks, October 2008

In the health care industry, a "sentinel event" is known as an occurrence that can cause harm or death to a patient. To keep health care organizations informed of situations that can potentially lead to sentinel events, Ray Valek is a regular contributor to the team that produces Sentinel Event Alerts.

The Joint Commission - an organization dedicated to improving health care quality and safety - publishes the alerts. Best known for providing accreditation services to hospitals, The Joint Commission provides a host of other services related to performance improvement.

While the alerts are distributed directly to America's hospitals, the media often covers the alert topics, as well. Valek contributed to a recent alert about how intimidating and disruptive behavior on the part of health care professionals can compromise safety. The Chicago Tribune, Boston Globe, New York Sun, Cincinnati Enquirer, Modern Healthcare, and Hospitals and Health Networks were among the media writing stories about this alert. Another alert to which Valek contributed covered the risks posed by blood thinners. US News and World Report, the Los Angeles Times and other media covered this alert.

"I love working on Sentinel Event Alerts because my efforts result in communication that has the primary goal of preventing harm or death," says Valek. "Also, from a PR perspective, it's interesting to do the reporting that actually creates the news - and to be encouraged by the client to write about the industry in a constructively critical way. Most of the time as a PR professional, your job is to convey information in the most positive way possible. That's not the case with Sentinel Event Alerts. Their purpose is to describe risks in a vivid fashion - and to provide information on how they can be avoided."

@ Valek & Company 2016