News Release

ISMP Announces 19th Annual Cheers Awards Recipients

The Institute for Safe Medication Practices (ISMP) is proud to announce its 19th Annual Cheers Awards winners. The annual awards dinner will be held on Tuesday evening, December 6, 2016, at Stoney’s Rockin’ Country in Las Vegas. The Cheers Awards honor individuals, organizations, and companies that have set a standard of excellence for others to follow in the prevention of medication errors and adverse drug events.

The winners of this year’s awards are: 

  • Ascension
    Ascension is being honored for its comprehensive implementation of the 2014-2015 ISMP Targeted Medication Safety Best Practices for Hospitals. Ascension is the largest non-profit health system in the U.S., and includes 141 hospitals. Executive leadership made it a priority to integrate all of the ISMP best practices into their hospitals’ culture and operations, with the goal of improving patient safety and outcomes. Ascension identified barriers to implementation, established multidisciplinary teams, held monthly coaching calls, and shared tools and resources. They also conducted pre- and post-surveys and engaged an independent consulting firm to evaluate compliance. This initiative resulted in an increase in best practice adoption at each practice site that was well above the national average. Ascension leadership has committed to engage in the same process for the 2016-2017 ISMP best practices.
  • American Society of Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition (ASPEN) Parenteral Nutrition Safety Committee
    After a 2011 Parenteral Nutrition (PN) Safety Summit attended by 46 key stakeholders, ASPEN appointed a multidisciplinary task force that has increased PN safety awareness significantly. The task force became a standing committee that has published numerous recommendations, including several addressing electronic health record (EHR)-related processes such as PN prescribing order review, compounding, and labeling. The committee conducted a PN safety survey and gap analysis, collected data on PN medication errors, and developed specific competencies for staff involved in PN prescribing, dispensing, and administration. In addition, the committee developed a certificate program to educate members of the healthcare team who work with PN on safe practices. More than 1,300 clinicians have participated in the program, and ASPEN is seeking an industry grant to be able to share it with pharmacy residents as well.
  • HCA Clinical Services Group
    The Hospital Corporation of America (HCA) Clinical Services Group created a Clinical Pharmacist Workflow (CPW) model that uses evidence-based, user-created decision support and real-time information to alert pharmacists to opportunities to reduce the risk of patient harm from medication-related events. This initiative utilized ISMP’s error reduction recommendation to identify ways to embed safety throughout the medication management system from procurement to monitoring. The real-time care versus point-in-time report review provided by CPW led to improved productivity and streamlined workflow. Between 2014 and 2015, CPW was deployed in 153 HCA–affiliated hospitals, with a 48% decrease in coded adverse drug events since implementation. Pharmacists have partnered with nursing to ensure correct kilogram weights are recorded in 1 of every 55 patient admissions, to prevent over- or underdosing.
  • Immunization Action Coalition
    Over the course of 25 years, the Immunization Action Coalition (IAC) has become the national nonprofit leader in immunization education and advocacy for healthcare professionals. Created and sustained by its unique partnership with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), IAC plays a central role in coordinating and enabling every part of the national immunization community, working to reduce the incidence of 23 vaccine-preventable diseases by raising immunization rates and preventing vaccine errors, including omissions. IAC develops free resources, including hundreds of educational materials for healthcare providers and patients, and also maintains a website for healthcare professionals ( and its website for the public ( Its online publications include the weekly email information service, IAC Express, the quarterly periodicals Needle Tips and Vaccinate Adults, and the popular feature “Ask the Experts.”
  • Robert K. Stoelting, MD
    Dr. Stoelting has devoted most of his career to spearheading efforts to improve the safety of patients undergoing anesthesia and in the operating room (OR). During his nearly 20 years as President of the Anesthesia Patient Safety Foundation (APSF), he has helped advocate for crucial medication safety initiatives, provide vital educational programs and workshops, and offer free resources for error reduction, including a newsletter with a worldwide circulation of more than 122,000. Dr. Stoelting’s dedication to collaboration has led to numerous national consensus conferences that have brought together a wide range of stakeholders to address topics such as patient controlled analgesia, use of high-alert medications, and labeling medications in the OR. The combined impact of APSF’s initiatives along with others in the field has been a 10- to 20- fold reduction in mortality and catastrophic morbidity for healthy patients undergoing routine anesthesia.

The ISMP Lifetime Achievement Award is being presented to David Marx, JD. David Marx is a true pioneer in the safety world, from developing human factors risk modeling methods to being the father of the Just Culture accountability model. He has more than two decades of experience in transforming workplaces in high-risk industries, and has brought lessons learned from aviation, aerospace, and transportation into the healthcare arena. Marx, who is currently CEO of Outcome Engenuity, a risk management firm, authored Patient Safety and the ‘Just Culture’: A Primer for Healthcare Executives for the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) and advises the U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) on safety issues. He has authored two books on workplace accountability, Whack-aMole: The Price We Pay for Expecting Perfection, and Dave’s Subs: A Novel Story about Workplace Accountability.

The 2016 Cheers keynote speaker will be Daniel Budnitz, MD, MPH, Capt., USPHS. Dr. Budnitz directs the Medication Safety Program at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). He has authored more than 50 publications on medication safety, public health surveillance, and injury prevention, which have led to new policies by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as well as a federal action plan for prevention of adverse drug events. Dr. Budnitz also launched the PROTECT Initiative, a publicprivate partnership to reduce medication overdoses in children, and a public education campaign on safe medication use and storage ( He is currently a Captain in the U.S. Public Health Service (USPHS) and has practiced as a Board Certified internist at the Atlanta Veterans Affairs (VA) Medical Center and the DeKalb-Grady Neighborhood Health Center.


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