Share your “Groundhog Day” stories

By: December 27th, 2012 Email This Post Print This Post

Hello, OSHA Healthcare Advisor Readers!

Medical Environment Update editor Will Kilburn here. Looking ahead to the February issue, I’m working on a story based around the central theme of the movie Groundhog Day as it relates to healthcare safety.

Those of you who have seen the film can skip the next couple of paragraphs, but if you haven’t: It stars Bill Murray as a big-city TV weatherman who is sent to Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, to cover the yearly emergence of Phil the Groundhog. Murray’s character—also named Phil– clearly despises the duty, and as such he does a shoddy job at it.

A freak snowstorm that afternoon prevents Phil from going back to the city, but the next morning, Phil wakes up to find that it’s February 2 once again, and he’s forced to repeat the day’s events, over and over again, continually waking up every morning to find that it’s still Feb. 2. Eventually, Phil realizes that to break the cycle, get to the next day, and get out of Punxsutawney, it’ll take hard work and—very importantly—a different approach to his dilemma.

My questions to you are:

1. Have you ever encountered a safety issue which is caused by someone/some people repeatedly doing something wrong, or a problem that you see many people or facilities doing? (The cause could be anything—lack of attention, the wrong technique, or simply failing to bother to do a good job)
2. How was it resolved? Was it something that was said, something that was shown to someone?

What I’m looking for here is any combination of a nuts-and-bolts solution–a change in technique, or a different placement of equipment– or a solution which involves a change in approach to the problem. If you like you can also email me directly at

Responses will become part of a story for the Feburary 2013 issue of Medical Environment Update.

Best, Will


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