Patient Safety Movement Foundation Announces Winners of 2020 Humanitarian Awards

Four individuals recognized for their efforts eliminating and raising awareness of preventable patient deaths

IRVINE, CALIF.--(Business Wire / Korea Newswire)--The Patient Safety Movement Foundation (PSMF), a global non-profit committed to achieving zero preventable patient deaths by 2030, announced the winners of its 2020 Humanitarian Awards at a virtual ceremony on February 8, 2021. The recipients included Steve Burrows, Vonda Vaden Bates, Marty Hatlie and Barb Pelletreau. Each year the Humanitarian Awards recognize leaders who have made significant progress in the last year eliminating or raising awareness of preventable patient deaths.

“To achieve our goal of zero preventable patient deaths by 2030, it is critical to unify people and collectively improve patient safety across the globe,” said David B. Mayer, MD, CEO of Patient Safety Movement Foundation. “We are pleased to honor each of these individuals for their remarkable efforts to spread public awareness of this important issue and improve the patient experience for everyone.”

The Humanitarian Award recipients were honored across three categories this year - the Judie Burrows award, Michael Seres award and Steven Moreau award. The Judie Burrows award was established to recognize an individual who has told a story of preventable harm or death that has made a significant impact in the public sphere in the last year. The Michael Seres award was designed in honor of lifelong patient safety advocate, Michael Seres, who passed away in May 2020. This award recognizes an individual who contributed to the advancement of person and family engagement, public awareness and public engagement in patient safety. The Steven Moreau award is given to a hospital administrator who possesses a zeal for improving patient safety at their hospital. This year’s recipients included:

· Steve Burrows, writer and director of the acclaimed documentary “Bleed Out,” was recognized with the Judie Burrows award for the impact his HBO film had in elevating the issues around patient safety in the public domain. His documentary follows the story of his mother, Judie Burrows, who experienced a preventable medical error during a partial hip surgery that afflicted her for the rest of her life. Since “Bleed Out” was released in December 2018 over 10 million viewers have watched the film on HBO. Prior to its release, Burrows, his wife Margo and their family thought they were alone, but within the first 24 hours of the film streaming they were inundated with thousands of Facebook messages from strangers who connected with Judie Burrows’ story.

· Vonda Vaden Bates has been passionate about advancing public awareness and engagement around the issue of preventable hospital deaths since losing her husband, Charles “Yogiraj” Bates II, to a preventable venous thromboembolism in 2012. She played an integral role in the conceptualization and success of the #uniteforsafecare campaign - a collaborative effort between the Patient Safety Movement Foundation, American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA), The Leapfrog Group and International Society for Quality in Health Care (ISQua) to bring attention to system-wide improvements that will ensure better health worker and patient safety outcomes. Bates was recognized with the Michael Seres award for her efforts to advance public awareness and for helping make the #uniteforsafecare campaign and PSMF-hosted events in September 2020 a success.

· Marty Hatlie was also honored with the Michael Seres award. Hatlie has been a lifelong leader in patient safety since he served as executive director of the National Patient Safety Foundation. However, this humanitarian award acknowledges his exemplary work in the last 12 months. Hatlie served as one of the co-chairs for the March for Patient Safety turned #uniteforsafecare campaign. He dedicated much of 2019 and 2020 to launching the initiative.

· Barb Pelletreau, senior vice president of patient safety at CommonSpirit Health (formally known as Dignity Health), received the Steven Moreau award. Pelletreau was recognized for her leadership of the now 150+ hospital system, where she leads patient safety improvement efforts with transparency and candor. Under her leadership, Dignity Health became a PSMF 5-star hospital for making commitments in alignment with the Patient Safety Movement Foundation’s evidence-based Actionable Patient Safety Solutions (APSS) last year, reaffirming its dedication and commitment to zero preventable deaths.

The Patient Safety Movement Foundation launched the Humanitarian Awards in 2013 to recognize individuals whose work helps advance patient safety. To learn more about the awards and past winners, visit:

To watch the award presentation, visit

About the Patient Safety Movement Foundation: Each year, more than 200,000 people die unnecessarily in U.S. hospitals. Worldwide, 4.8 million lives are similarly lost. The Patient Safety Movement Foundation (PSMF) is a global non-profit on a mission to eliminate preventable deaths from hospital errors. PSMF uniquely brings patients and patient advocates, healthcare providers, medical technology companies, government, employers and private payers together under the same cause. From its Actionable Patient Safety Solutions and industry Open Data Pledge to its World Patient Safety, Science & Technology Summit and more, PSMF won’t stop fighting until it achieves zero. For more information, please visit to learn more, and follow PSMF on LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

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Patient Safety Movement Foundation
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