Why Is Just Culture Important?

Why is a just culture important?

A just culture:

Is needed for healthcare workers and patients to feel comfortable raising concerns about patient safety and reporting hazards and errors. This is a key feature of reporting culture.

Groups and organizations with a learning culture welcome reports of threats to patients’ safety as an essential source of information about weaknesses in the system that need to be addressed in order to improve safety. 

A just culture, effective reporting systems, and the will to learn and improve are hallmarks of an organization with a safety culture (see Safety Culture Fact Sheet)

Figure: Just culture, reporting culture and learning culture are all building blocks of a safety culture.

A safety culture:

Is needed to achieve optimal outcomes for patients.

Actively seeks information about threats to patients’ safety that need to be addressed to make care safer. 

Views errors, close calls, and concerns about patient safety as signals of potential system weakness that may need to be addressed in order to improve safety. 

Works together with a culture that promotes patient – provider partnerships to support the Quadruple Aim of healthcare delivery:

  • Improved patient experience of care
  • Improved health outcomes
  • Reduced healthcare costs
  • Improved healthcare provider experience.

Figure: Safety Culture (which includes a just culture, reporting culture and learning culture) works with a patient-provider partnership culture to achieve the Quadruple Aim