The aim is to demonstrate the benefit of the medico-ergonomic approach for the redesign of clinical work systems. Based on the six layer model, a concept for an ‘integrated therapy safety management’ is drafted. This concept could serve as a basis to improve resilience.METHODS
The concept is developed through a concept-based approach. The state of the art of safety and complexity research in human factors and ergonomics forms the basis. The findings are synthesized to a concept for ‘integrated therapy safety management’. The concept is applied by way of example for the ‘medication process’ to demonstrate its practical implementation.RESULTS
The ‘integrated therapy safety management’ is drafted in accordance with the six layer model. This model supports a detailed description of specific work tasks, the corresponding responsibilities and related workflows at different layers by using the concept of ‘bridge managers’. ‘Bridge managers’ anticipate potential errors and monitor the controlled system continuously. If disruptions or disturbances occur, they respond with corrective actions which ensure that no harm results and they initiate preventive measures for future procedures. The concept demonstrates that in a complex work system, the human factor is the key element and final authority to cope with the residual complexity. The expertise of the ‘bridge managers’ and the recursive hierarchical structure results in highly adaptive clinical work systems and increases their resilience.CONCLUSIONS
The medico-ergonomic approach is a highly promising way of coping with two complexities. It offers a systematic framework for comprehensive analyses of clinical work systems and promotes interdisciplinary collaboration.