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By ISQua Friday. Sep 18, 2020

ISQua Webinar Recording: Psychological Safety - Why understanding voice and silence behaviours is critical to staff and patient safety Featured

This webinar presented research that takes an in-depth look at what psychological safety means for health workers, how it differs within and across teams and how it is influenced by leaders and by team characteristics and team dynamics.


It also presented some practical guidance for creating greater psychological safety in healthcare settings and provides an overview of the open-access resources that have been co-designed with healthcare workers through this body of research.


READ NOW - A systematic review of factors that enable psychological safety in healthcare teams - This systematic review of psychological safety literature identifies a list of enablers of psychological safety within healthcare teams. This list can be used as a first step in developing observational measures and interventions to improve psychological safety in healthcare teams. (International Journal for Quality in Health Care, Volume 32, Issue 4, May 2020, Pages 240–250)


Learning Objectives

  • To deepen the audience’s understanding of psychological safety and its importance for staff and patient safety
  • To synthesise the learning on what has and hasn’t worked in previous interventions to improve psychological safety
  • To provide practical guidance on improving psychological safety in healthcare settings.


Presentation Slides

Psychological Safety Webinar Slides





Professor Eilish McAuliffe

Eilish McAuliffeEilish McAuliffe is Professor of Health Systems at University College Dublin and Director of the UCD Centre for Interdisciplinary Research, Education and Innovation in Health Systems (IRIS Centre).  IRIS research activity is focused on systems and implementation science using participatory and co-design principles. Prof McAuliffe also established and led the Centre for Global Health at Trinity College Dublin for 10 years.   Her research activity is primarily focused on strengthening health systems.  Utilising interdisciplinary approaches to identify problems in existing service provision, particularly in the areas of leadership, teamwork and organizational culture, she co-designs and evaluates new models and approaches to improve the quality and safety of healthcare.   In 2015, she was the recipient of a 5-year Health Research Board Research Leaders award to conduct a programme of research on Collective Leadership and Safety Cultures. This programme includes in-depth research with healthcare teams to understand and shape the factors that influence team environment and staff and patient safety. Prof McAuliffe has published more than 100 articles in leading healthcare journals as well as a number of co-edited and co-authored books. 



Ms Róisín O’Donovan

Roisin ODonovanMs Róisín O’Donovan is a PhD student at the UCD Centre for Research, Education and Innovation in Health Systems (UCD IRIS) at the School of Nursing, Midwifery and Health Systems in University College Dublin. Since joining UCD Health Systems in October 2016, she has worked on the 'Collective Leadership and Safety Cultures' (Co-Lead). Her involvement in this project furthered her interest in research as a tool for positive change within the Irish healthcare system and the use of co-design methodologies to understand and find ways to tackle the challenges faced by healthcare teams. Her PhD research is focused on understanding and improving psychological safety in healthcare teams. This research is funded under the Irish Research Council Employment-Based Postgraduate Programme and her employment partner, the Ireland East Hospital Group. She holds a BA(Hons) in Applied Psychology (University College Cork) and a Masters in Psychological Science (University College Dublin).