Novicoff Program in Research in Quality and Patient Safety


Wendy M. Novicoff, Ph.D.

Wendy M. Novicoff, Ph.D.

The purpose of this program is to advance the science of patient safety and quality of care to reduce preventable harm to patients and staff, improve clinical outcomes and experiences, and reduce waste in healthcare delivery systems. This program builds and expands on University-wide efforts to train faculty, staff, and students in clinical care improvement and to promote research that defines best practices for the University of Virginia and beyond. The program integrates educational, research, and clinical care forces into a community that is focused on developing, testing, and studying challenges to quality and patient safety and identifying solutions that can be implemented and sustained.

The unique challenges and strengths to doing research in quality and patient safety create opportunities for collaboration across disciplines to reshape our healthcare landscape and how we approach education and research that includes using proven scientific methods to improve processes and outcomes.  Collaboration across the University of Virginia allows us to leverage the strengths of experts both within and outside of the UVA Health System, including the Darden School of Business and the School of Engineering.

Program Aims

The main aims of the program are:

  • To educate faculty, staff, and students to be effective team members to improve clinical care, improve patient safety, and support systems thinking by offering a variety of classroom, online, and other educational opportunities, including opportunities for hands-on interdisciplinary project work
  • To study, test, and establish best practices in all areas of the clinical enterprise by systematically applying the scientific method to improve the safety of patients and employees through real-time problem solving and short cycle interventions
  • To evaluate the effectiveness and generalizability of short cycle interventions and investigate more complex safety and quality issues that arise
  • To lead research efforts focused on quality and safety in healthcare that will help reduce disparities, improve efficiency and value, establish best practices, and enhance a health system culture that values collaboration, accountability, and organizational learning
  • To promote the sharing and publication of new knowledge both within the UVA community and with outside institutions, patients, and other stakeholders through the support of scholarly activities of faculty, staff, and students.