Peter J. Pronovost, M.D.

Director, Armstrong Institute for Patient Safety and Quality, Johns Hopkins
Medical Expert, The Wall Street Journal
Co-author, Safe Patients, Smart Hospitals

Internationally acclaimed thought leader in patient safety and patient safety change leadership.

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Peter Pronovost is an internationally acclaimed leader in patient safety, devising life-saving clinical practices that are yielding dramatic improvements in hospitals across the United States and around the world. He also is a successful leadership innovator, developing ways to motivate health care professionals to change the culture of their institutions in ways that reduce medical errors and hospital-acquired infections.

As one of his most notable contributions, he introduced an intensive care checklist protocol that saved 1,500 lives and $100 million in Michigan during its first 18 months. Dr. Pronovost (with coauthor Eric Vohr) published a book on patient safety titled Safe Patients, Smart Hospitals: How One Doctor's Checklist Can Help Us Change Health Care from the Inside Out.

He has received a MacArthur Fellowship, commonly known as a "genius grant," for his work and was named one of the world's "most influential people" of 2008 by TIME magazine.

In April 2012, Dr. Pronovost was named recipient of ABMS' first Health Care Quality and Patient Safety Award. This award "recognises extraordinary national or international contributions to the fields of quality and patient safety".

Dr. Pronovost was named Director of the newly formed Armstrong Institute for Patient Safety and Quality at Johns Hopkins. Through a $10 million gift from C. Michael Armstrong, the institute will focus on eliminating preventable harm for patients.

Peter J. Pronovost, MD, PhD is a practicing anesthesiologist and critical care specialist physician at Johns Hopkins Hospital and a researcher and professor at Johns Hopkins University. He is a Professor in the School of Medicine in the Departments of Anesthesiology and Critical Care Medicine, and Surgery. He also is a Professor in the Bloomberg School of Public Health (Dept of Health Policy and Management) and in the School of Nursing.

He is the author of more than 200 articles and chapters in the fields of patient safety, ICU care, quality health care, evidence-based medicine, and the measurement and evaluation of safety efforts.

Improving Patient Safety
Dr. Pronovost has saved countless lives by developing and promoting the simplest of management tools: a checklist for preventing hospital-acquired infections. Michigan hospitals began implementing his checklist in Intensive Care Units in 2003. Within three months, hospital-acquired infections in a typical ICU in the state fell from 2.7 per 1000 patients to zero — zero — and sustained spectacular results for years.

Dr. Pronovost currently leads several large national and international safety projects. His own projects include a web-based ICU safety reporting system, methods for minimizing the incidence of aspiration pneumonia and acute lung injury in patients receiving ventilator assistance, and quality care measures for patients suffering from sever sepsis.

For this work, Dr. Pronovost has been recognized by TIME magazine and been given a MacArthur Fellowship "genius grant." He has won several national awards, including the 2004 John Eisenberg Patient Safety Research Award. In September 2008, the US House of Representatives' Committee on Oversight and Government Reform released a report strongly endorsing his ICU program.

"Sparing countless lives from the often deadly consequences of human error and setting new standards of health care performance in the United States and internationally." (MacArthur Foundation)


  • Director, Armstrong Institute for Patient Safety and Quality, Johns Hopkins
  • Johns Hopkins Medicine’s senior vice president for patient safety and quality
  • Intensive care specialist physician and practicing anesthesiologist, Johns Hopkins Hospital
  • Professor, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, departments of Anesthesiology and Critical Care Medicine, and Surgery
  • Professor, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Dept of Health Policy and Management and the School of Nursing
  • Medical Director, Center for Innovation in Quality Patient Care.
  • Founder, Quality and Safety Research Group
  • Board of Directors, Cantel Medical Corp. as an independent member
  • Advisor, Alliance for Patient Safety, World Health Organization
  • Chair, JCAHO ICU Advisory Panel for Quality Measures
  • Chair, ICU Physician Staffing Committee for the Leapfrog Group
  • Quality Measures Work Group, National Quality Forum


  • Institute of Medicine
  • MacArthur Fellowship
  • 2005 John Eisenberg Patient Safety Research Award
  • Named one of the world's "most influential people" of 2008, TIME


  • PhD, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
  • MD, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine
  • BS, Fairfield University


Safe Patients, Smart Hospitals

How One Doctor's Checklist Can Help Us Change Health Care from the Inside Out

Peter Pronovost and Eric Vohr

A leading innovator in patient safety shows how to save lives

While Americans spend more on health care than any other country in the western world, our hospitals and clinics kill more patients. Patient safety expert Dr. Peter Pronovost is working to remedy that, by changing the way hospitals and doctors function day to day. In fact, his ideas are already saving people. By introducing a five-step checklist that standardizes a common ICU procedure, Dr. Pronovost has decreased the rate of infection-and as a result, unnecessary deaths- across the country by 90 percent.

Improving health care is a priority for all Americans, but it's a daunting subject. In this book, Dr. Pronovost makes reform relatable, easy to understand, and inspiring. With opinions and anecdotal evidence from patients, health care professionals, and Dr. Pronovost's own experience, as well as comprehensive research on medical procedures and policies, Safe Patients, Smart Hospitals shows how simple steps can fix our hospitals and improve patient care.

Plume (25 Jan 2011)


Building Team SpiritThe Wall Street Journal


Peter tailors each presentation to the needs of his audience and is not limited to the topics we have listed below. These are subjects that have proven valuable to customers in the past and are meant only to suggest his range and interests. Please ask us about any subject that interests you; we are sure that we can accommodate you.

Patient Safety


Safe Patients, Smart Hospitals

Open Forum | Johns Hopkins Hospital

On Patient Safety | WISH Qatar


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