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Patricia Sullivan, UPHS VP of Quality and Patient Safety
April 13, 2010, Volume 56, No. 29


Dr. Patricia Sullivan, vice president of clinical development at the University of Pennsylvania Health System (UPHS) since 2003, has been promoted to Vice President, Quality and Patient Safety. In her current position, Dr. Sullivan is responsible for efforts to reduce clinical risks—a key UPHS initiative—as well as improving the process of patient care across the Health System. Instrumental in creating the Office of Patient Affairs, Dr. Sullivan has worked with staff to assure that appropriate care, communication and if needed, service recovery is provided to every patient. Additionally, the Office of Patient Affairs has developed a sophisticated patient feedback system to more effectively identify areas of improvement. Dr. Sullivan has also led the effort to increase the effectiveness of an “early warning and intervention” system, where potential issues can be dealt with proactively and effectively.

With this promotion, Dr. Sullivan will work with the Health System’s Chief Medical Officer and Chief Nursing Officer to integrate the work of Unit Based Clinical Leadership (UBCL) teams, with essential services such as patient safety, outcomes reviews and regulatory affairs.  UBCL teams, which consist of a physician, nurse, and quality coordinator, work to improve coordination of care through interdisciplinary rounding and reducing variations in practice.

“With our continued emphasis on improving patient care, Pat is the perfect person to take on the vitally important duties and initiatives in the area of quality,” said Dr. P. J. Brennan, Chief Medical Officer for UPHS. “She is a proven leader and I look forward to her continued success in this endeavor.”

Dr. Sullivan has over 25 years of health care experience ranging from clinical bedside nurse to senior leadership. She received her BS in nursing from Hunter College, a master’s in public health from Columbia University and a PhD in health policy and management from New York University in 2003. She is a Senior Fellow of the Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics at Penn and is completing her term as president of the American Heart Association of Southeastern Pennsylvania.


Almanac - April 13, 2010, Volume 56, No. 29