Founded in 2003, the Task Force’s Justin’s Hope project focuses on HOPE: Healthcare Openness, Professionalism and Excellence. Through the efforts of Justin’s Hope, the Task Force provides education, research and reform toward quality and compassion in healthcare delivery. The vision for this project is to promote quality, safe, compassionate, patient and family centered healthcare and resolution of issues around medical errors through full disclosure.

This project was founded and continues to be managed by Dale Micalizzi, in memory of her son, Justin A. Micalizzi, who died at the age of 11 following an incision and drainage of a septic ankle. Through this project, the Task Force provides an opportunity for the community to learn from the experience of the Micalizzi family and to improve pediatric healthcare and the current system of responding to adverse events.

This year, Ms. Micalizzi coauthored a chapter in a book on patient health: The Heart of Health Care: Parents’ Perspectives on Patient Safety. Based on Ms. Micalizzi’s personal experience and professional research, the full chapter can be accessed at this link, and a brief introduction is included below:

The Heart of Health Care: Parents’ Perspectives on Patient Safety by Dale Ann Micalizzi and Marie M. Bismark

Behind the wall of silence in health care are the unanswered questions of parents whose children experienced harm at the hands of their caregivers. In an industry where information and communication are crucial to quality, parents’ voices often go unheard. Although that has begun slowly to change, providers could benefit from following the HEART model of service recovery, which includes hearing the concerns of patients and their families, empathizing with them, apologizing when care goes wrong, responding to parents’ concerns with openness, and thanking the patient and family.

Ms. Micalizzi is a highly regarded speaker and author on the topic of patient safety. In addition to numerous speaking engagements, Ms. Micalizzi co-authored an article published in cooperation within the Health Issues Center of Victoria’s Health Consumer Organization (Australia) with Marie M. Bismark MD, JD of the University of Melbourne.

The Justin’s Hope project maintains a healthcare blog at this link.

Published articles:

Click here to view Justin’s HOPE Project Video.

Follow us on Twitter @JustinHOPE

2015 Justin's HOPE IHI Forum Scholarship Winners

Justin’s 2015 Institute for Healthcare Improvement Forum Scholarship winners;
Drs. Heather McLean, Patricia Hopkins and Kristen Meisinger with Dale Ann Micalizzi.
We’ve awarded 25 IHI Scholarships to date in Justin’s memory to amazing clinicians dedicated to quality and safety.

Dale Ann Micalizzi has co-authored an article for Current Treatment Options in Pediatrics with Thomas Dahlborg and Dr. Hannah Zhu entitled, “Partnering with Parents and Families to Provide Safer Care,” found here. Ms. Micalizzi has also co-authored an article in Pediatric Anesthesia, “What happens when things go wrong” with Drs. Barbara Brandom and Patrick Callahan of UPMC found here.


Justin A. Micalizzi


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