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Position Classification Description

Position Class Code / Title: S0100 / Patient Safety Ofcr
Recruitment Tier: Tier 1
FLSA: Exempt
Grade: 15

This is a description of a Staff Position Classification. It is not an announcement of a position opening. To view descriptions of current openings, please go to UNMJobs and Search Postings to view positions that are currently accepting applications.

The following statements are intended to describe, in broad terms, the general functions and responsibility levels characteristic of positions assigned to this classification. They should not be viewed as an exhaustive list of the specific duties and prerequisites applicable to individual positions that have been so classified.


The Patient Safety Officer (PSO) has primary oversight of the facility-wide patient and health provider safety program in accordance with regulatory standards. This leadership role directs staff within the organization toward process improvements that support the reduction of medical/health care errors and other factors that contribute to unintended adverse patient outcomes. Oversees the strategic direction for patient safety initiatives and associated practices and provides leadership in developing a culture of safety. Identifies opportunities and initiatives to enhance patient safety and develops strategic and operational plans that build upon the present patient safety program.

Duties and Responsibilities

  1. Develops, enhances and monitors a comprehensive program that will promote a culture of safety, proactively identify risk, encourage adverse event reporting and a learning oriented analysis of safety events and near misses.
  2. Provides oversight of safety assessments and coordinates activities of patient safety and quality.
  3. Collaborates with various departments to ensure that organizational wide safety and quality initiatives are rolled out effectively and risk reduction strategies implemented wherever appropriate while engaging stakeholders in the process.
  4. Engages key stakeholders in the process of spreading successful improvements across the organization including reinforcing an environment that supports staff and encourages them to help identify and report errors and near misses.
  5. Conducts and/or oversees comprehensive and coordinated risk assessments for new or current patient services.
  6. Collaborates with leaders, nursing, clinicians, committees and medical staff to understand needs and assist in devising and documenting solutions that ensure the delivery of the safest possible healthcare.
  7. Promotes a safety-supportive culture and consistent application of evidence-based medicine; designs and implements educational presentations that facilitate the understanding and implementation of patient safety standards within the organization and provides ongoing education to staff.
  8. Analyzes and identifies trends from adverse-event reports and implement programs to address identified areas of concern.
  9. Develops and implements safety initiatives as directed by nursing and medical leadership.
  10. Performs miscellaneous job-related duties as assigned.

Minimum Job Requirements

  • Associate's degree in Nursing; at least 9 years of experience directly related to the duties and responsibilities specified. Certification/Licensure State of New Mexico Licensed Registered Nurse or licensure pending as documented by temporary licensure OR current RN licensure from a state participating in the multi-state privilege to practice compact with New Mexico.
  • Completed degree(s) from an accredited institution that are above the minimum education requirement may be substituted for experience on a year for year basis.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities Required

  • Detailed knowledge of laws and regulations affecting business operations of integrated healthcare delivery systems.
  • Demonstrated understanding of compliance systems and controls in a healthcare setting.
  • Knowledge of the operations of the health care industry and the health care delivery system.
  • Knowledge of risk management principles and issues regarding patient safety.
  • Strong professional, organizational and interpersonal skills required for working with teams, physicians, committees and senior management.
  • Expertise in group facilitation and evaluation methodologies, data display and statistics.
  • Demonstrated ability to develop institutional policies and procedures.
  • Ability to gather data, compile information, and prepare reports.
  • Ability to develop and deliver presentations.
  • Ability to communicate effectively, both orally and in writing.
  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills and the ability to work effectively with a wide range of constituencies in a diverse community.
  • Records maintenance skills.
  • Knowledge of internal and external audit processes and procedures.
  • Ability to supervise investigations, analyze information, and draw conclusions.
  • Ability to use independent judgment and to manage and impart confidential information.
  • Analytical, evaluative, and critical thinking skills.
  • Ability to assess training and development needs.

Conditions of Employment

  • CPR Certified.
  • May be required to submit to annual TB and rubella screening.
  • UNM will provide Hepatitis vaccination, candidate may decline vaccination through declination form or may provide record of vaccination from previous employer.
  • Successful candidate must submit to post-offer, pre-employment physical examination and medical history check.
  • Specified specialty nursing and/or mid-level provider certification may be a requirement for some positions in this classification.

Working Conditions and Physical Effort

  • Work environment may involve exposure to potentially dangerous materials and situations that require following extensive safety precautions and may include the use of protective equipment.
  • Work is normally performed in a clinic environment.
  • Light physical effort. Requires handling of average-weight objects up to 10 pounds or some standing or walking. Effort applies to no more than two (2) hours per day.

The University of New Mexico provides all training required by OSHA to ensure employee safety.

Revised Date: 03/20/2017