The Armstrong Institute Center for Health Care Human Factors is dedicated to improving the way that people — health care professionals, patients and families — interact with care systems so that they are safer, high performing and patient-centered. We bring a scientific approach to reengineering health care systems and processes so that medical errors are "designed out" and evidence-based care is built in.
The center brings together experts in human factors and organizational psychology with an interdisciplinary group of researchers, practitioners and educators who want to design health care systems and technologies that work for people, rather than set them up for mistakes and inefficiencies.
Services, Workshops and Speakers
The Center for Health Care Human Factors offers several services to help health care organizations and industry to improve safety, quality and productivity in care delivery.
Our team has extensive expertise in product design and usability evaluations across the product development life cycle. These products may include, but are not limited to, medical devices, health-related consumer products, combination products and health IT products such as electronic medical records and mobile health apps. Below is a sample of services provided:
- Human-centered design
- Interface design
- Instructional material design
- Expert heuristic evaluation
- Formative and summative usability evaluation
- Design of warnings and labels
Contact us to discuss how we can help ensure the safety, effectiveness, user satisfaction, ease of learning and efficiency of your products.
Bring a team to Johns Hopkins in Baltimore, Maryland, or have us come to your facility to deliver a training program tailored to your organization's needs and your audience. Aside from programs that provide a broad overview of human factors and systems-based approaches for health care improvement, we can deliver workshops to help your organization tackle specific challenges, such as:
- Infection control and prevention
- Medication safety
- Health IT design and implementation
- Improving the safety of care transitions
- Medical device design, usability and safety
- Proactive risk assessments and root-cause analyses
- Health care worker safety and well-being
Contact us for details.
Our human factors researchers and practitioners have deep experience in helping organizations to reduce preventable patient harm and improve care delivery. Our consulting teams can help your organization to:
- Redesign work systems to achieve your goals, such as preventing infections, reducing readmissions or improving patient flow
- Perform medical accident investigations following sentinel events, using a model similar to a National Transportation Safety Board investigation
- Enhance patient-centeredness of care
- Implement health information technology
- Conduct failure modes and effects analyses
- Develop training videos and manuals that are effective and usable because they are based on human factors and risk analysis approaches
- Many other patient safety and health care improvement initiatives
Contact us to discuss your needs.
We have nationally and internationally recognized human factors faculty and experts who are frequently sought-after speakers. Please contact us to discuss speaking engagement opportunities and specific topics.
Email us to inquire about a speaker.
Work With Us
Are you pursuing a career in human factors or seeking to incorporate human factors principles, approaches and methods into your efforts to improve patient safety? The Center for Health Care Human Factors welcomes inquiries from health care leaders, human factors experts, organizational psychologists, clinician scientists, health care professionals, experts from other scientific disciplines, trainees and students about opportunities to join our team or collaborate with us.
- Postdoctoral fellowships
- Research opportunities for students, trainees and junior scientists
- Joint projects
- Research mentorship (e.g., NIH K-Career Awards)
highlights Our Current Projects
Project Firstline: foundational questions to inform infection control training and improvement
The Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory (JHU/APL) and the Johns Hopkins Medicine Armstrong Institute Center for Health Care Human Factors have partnered to explore enhancements to infection control within the built environment and workflows within, for the nation’s operating rooms (ORs) and other clinical spaces.
A Human Factors and Systems Engineering Approach for Understanding the Diagnostic Process and Associated Hazards in the Emergency Department
The aim of this project is to understand provider (physician and advanced practice provider) work involved in ED diagnosis and identify associated performance shaping factors, to understand collaborative work involved in ED diagnosis and identify associated performance shaping factors and to conduct a proactive risk assessment of the diagnostic process in the ED.
Strategies for Improving Opioid Use in Perioperative Pain Management
PROMIS Learning Lab: Partnership in Resilience for Medication Safety
AHRQ-JHU sub to UTA R18HS027277-01
The goal of the project is to develop and test innovative tools and design guidelines to enable partnering between patients/families and professionals to reduce harms from inappropriate practices of medication use.
Research and Presentations
Through presentations and by authoring academic publications, the center's experts have established themselves as international leaders in the application of human factors to improving patient safety and health care quality.
- Making Healthcare Safer IV. Content last reviewed September 2023. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD.
- Choi JJ, Rosen MA, Shapiro MF, Safford MM. Towards diagnostic excellence on academic ward teams: building a conceptual model of team dynamics in the diagnostic process. Diagnosis (Berl). 2023 Aug 11. doi: 10.1515/dx-2023-0065. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 37561698.
- White Paper: Making Healthcare Safer IV: Final Report on Prioritization of Patient Safety Practices for a New Rapid Review or Rapid Response. Content last reviewed July 2023. Effective Health Care Program, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD.
- Abraham J, Rosen M, Greilich PE. Improving Perioperative Handoffs: Moving Beyond Standardized Checklists and Protocols. Jt Comm J Qual Patient Saf. 2023 Aug;49(8):341-344. doi: 10.1016/j.jcjq.2023.05.002. Epub 2023 May 22. PMID: 37353400.
- Xie A, Koontz, DW, Colantuoni, EA, Voskertchian, A, Miller, MR, Fackler, JC, Milstone, AM, Woods-Hill, CZ. Application of participatory ergonomics to the dissemination of a quality improvement program for optimizing blood culture use. The Joint Commission Journal on Quality and Patient Safety. 2023; Epub ahead of print.
- Xie A, Hsu Y-J, Speed TJ, Saunders J, Nguyen J, Khasawneh A, Kim S, Marsteller J, McDonald E, Shechter R, Hanna MN. The use of telemedicine for perioperative pain management during the COVID-19 pandemic. Journal of Telemedicine and Telecare. 2023; Epub ahead of print.
- Rosen MA. Real-Time Location Systems for Quality Improvement: Promises, Challenges, and Recommendations. Qual Manag Health Care. 2023 Apr-Jun 01;32(2):131-132. doi: 10.1097/QMH.0000000000000423. PMID: 36959169.
- Rosen MA. Build teamwork on a solid foundation: team familiarity promotes effective interprofessional collaboration. Evid Based Nurs. 2023 Mar 17:ebnurs-2022-103672. doi: 10.1136/ebnurs-2022-103672. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 36931702.
- Miller SD, Murphy Z, Gray JH, Marsteller J, Oliva-Hemker M, Maslen A, Lehmann HP, Nagy P, Hutfless S, Gurses AP. Human-Centered Design of a Clinical Decision Support for Anemia Screening in Children with Inflammatory Bowel Disease. Appl Clin Inform. 2023 Mar;14(2):345-353. doi: 10.1055/a-2040-0578. Epub 2023 Feb 21. PMID: 36809791; PMCID: PMC10171996.
- Gurses, A. P., Perry, S. J., Pennathur, P., Sax, H., Bell, M., & Roth (Chair), E. (2022). Human Factors Engineering in Infection Prevention & Control: Opportunities, Examples, and the Future. Proceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society Annual Meeting, 66(1), 565–569. https://doi.org/10.1177/1071181322661004
- Daodu, O., Gurses, A., Osei, P., Nosakhare, E., Perry, S., Sultan, M., . . . Li, J. (2022). Work system barriers to & resilience strategies for COVID-19 PPE use in the emergency department: A qualitative interview study. Antimicrobial Stewardship & Healthcare Epidemiology, 2(S1), S10-S10. doi:10.1017/ash.2022.71