August 4, 2016

Medical student Derek Blok publishes essay on patient safety and quality improvement

The Society of General Internal Medicine Forum has published an essay written by Wayne State University School of Medicine medical student Derek Blok about why medical error prevention and quality improvement have become educational and professional priorities for him.

Blok, Class of 2017, was president of the School of Medicine's Institute of Healthcare Improvement chapter last year, and helped lead curricular innovation that resulted in integration of patient safety and quality improvement into the preclinical curriculum.

"Prioritizing Patient Safety: The Musings of a Young Padawan," is included in the journal's July 2016 issue. In the essay, he also explains what he and other students and faculty members are doing to incorporate patient safety into the school's preclinical curriculum.

"His intense commitment and superior organizational skills increased the visibility of our chapter and moved forward the mission of ensuring students are adequately trained to provide safe high quality health care," said Associate Professor Diane Levine, M.D., who is the vice chair of Education for the WSU Department of Internal Medicine. "Derek Blok will be a change agent. We are very fortunate to have him at the Wayne State University School of Medicine."

Blok was only the second student invited to join the SGIM's national Patient Safety and Quality Improvement Subcommittee, providing key insights from a student perspective.

"I am honored that my essay was published and am very grateful to Dr. Levine and the rest of the Quality and Patient Safety Subcommittee of the Society of General Internal Medicine for the opportunity they've granted me to continue to expand my experiences and knowledge within the realm of quality and patient safety," Blok said. "I wrote the essay because I believe that quality and patient safety is a critical aspect of all fields of medicine, and stand at the outset of a career that will be significantly shaped by opportunities to contribute to the improvement of the quality of health care we deliver. I am particularly honored that the opinions of a student were considered worthy to be shared in the Society of General Internal Medicine Forum."