Patient Safety Group

Patient Safety is at the heart of all of the work RCSEd undertakes. For more than 500 years the College has worked to uphold surgical standards to ensure that patient safety is assured. Through training, education, exams, and our influencing and engaging work, we aim to improve the safety of healthcare for all.

RCSEd Patient Safety Group

The Patient Safety Group (PSG) exists to ensure that RCSEd’s core professional standards, training and education activities are focused on continuously improving patient safety and reducing harm.

The RCSEd Patient Safety Board was established in 2008 following the development of the NOTSS (Non-Technical Skills for Surgeons) taxonomy. Under the successive stewardship of Professor George Youngson and Mr. Simon Paterson Brown, the board worked to promote understanding of human factors in surgery. Today, NOTSS programmes are an integral part of the RCSEd education portfolio and an established part of surgical training worldwide.

To build on the hugely successful work of this board, the new RCSEd Patient Safety Group was launched in August 2018. This multidisciplinary group is drawn from all faculties of the College and includes representatives from both the wider surgical team and patients. It supports and co-ordinates existing RCSEd patient safety initiatives, sets a proactive safety agenda for the College and facilitates collaboration with external organizations on patient safety issues.

This group champions safety at RCSEd - for patients, for surgeons, for teams, for organizations - for all.

The PSG does this by:

  • Providing RCSEd members and fellows with expertise and advice on patient safety issues, for example, through the recent Patient Safety webinar series.
  • Promoting good practice and co-ordinating training to improve the safety of surgical care, such as the Surgical Ward Round Toolkit web resource.
  • Increasing awareness of clinical human factors to improve the safety of surgical care, for example, helping to co-ordinate various training resources  (Non-Technical Skills for Surgeons (NOTSS), PINTS and DeNTS) and developing collaborations with national human factors groups (e.g.
  • Working with medical educators, NHS bodies, and other Royal Colleges to promote transparent, collaborative, and supportive care.
  • Raising the importance of healthcare worker's resilience and wellbeing in ensuring patient safety.
  • Promoting RCSEd campaigns, such as the hugely successful and important Anti-bullying and undermining campaign #letsremoveit, where safety is enhanced through continuous learning rather than blame.
  • Reviewing incidents reported to the National Reporting and Learning System (NRLS) to determine whether lessons can be learned.
  • Encouraging RCSEd Fellows and Members to provide feedback from their Morbidity and Mortality meetings to promote a culture of learning; we work closely with the Scottish Morbidity and Mortality Programme, CORESS, and NHS England Patient Safety Strategy.
  • Ensuring RCSEd representation on national audits of practice, such as NCEPOD (National Confidential Enquiry into Patient Outcomes and Death)
  • Providing information and support on informed consent, through the successful ICONS course. 
  • Promoting best practice in Duty of Candour. 
  • Contributing to policy consultations and influencing policy makers.

The Terms of Reference can be found here.


The Patient Safety Group is led by RCSEd Council Member Miss Anna Paisley, a Consultant General and Upper GI Surgeon at the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh.

Patient Safety Group Members

  • Miss Anna Paisley
  • Mrs Claire Morgan
  • Dr Sarah Manton
  • Ms Sarah Milliken
  • Professor Angus Watson
  • Mr. Ray Delicata
  • Mr. Richard Steyn
  • Chris Sanderson
  • Professor Steven Yule
  • Michael Moneypenny
  • Professor Bryn Baxendale
  • Mr. Eddie McGill
  • Edith Scott
  • Joanna Woodward
  • Majid Mukadam
  • Dr Sarah Healy
  • Dr Annie Sorbie
  • Mr James Tomlinson
  • Katie Hurst
  • Helen Hughes
  • Majid Rashid
  • Mr Chris McEwan
  • Mr Nicholas Fletcher
  • Mr Joel Norton

The current members of the Patient Safety Group are:

  • Miss Anna Paisley (Council Member and Chair)
  • Mrs. Claire Morgan (Dental Faculty Representative)
  • Dr. Sarah Manton (Faculty of Dental Trainers Representative)
  • Professor Angus Watson (Faculty of Remote, Rural and Humanitarian Healthcare Representative)
  • Mr. Ray Delicata (Faculty of Peri-Operative Care Representative)
  • Mr. Richard Steyn (Faculty of Pre-Hospital Care Representative)
  • Mr. Chris Sanderson (Director of Public Affairs)
  • Professor Steven Yule (RCSEd Director of Non-Technical Skills)
  • Dr. Michael Moneypenny (Anaesthetic Representative)
  • Professor Bryn Baxendale (Anaesthetic Representative)
  • Mr Majid Rashid (Scottish Clinical Leadership Fellow)
  • Mr. Eddie McGill (Patient Representatives)
  • Miss. Edith Scott (Patient Representatives)
  • Miss Joanna Woodward (RCSEd Birmingham Office)
  • Mr. Majid Mukadam (SAS Committee Representative)
  • Dr Sarah Healey (Younger Fellows Group Representative) 
  • Ms. Annie Sorbie (Lay Committee Representative)
  • Mr James Tomlinson (RCSEd Faculty of Surgical Trainers)
  • Katie Hurst (RCSEd Trainees Committee)
  • Helen Hughes (Committee Representative)
  • Majid Rashid (Committee Representative)
  • Mr Chris McEwan (Committee Representative)
  • Mr Nicholas Fletcher (Committee Representative)
  • Mr Joel Norton (Committee Representative)

Patient Safety Resources

A large focus of patient safety at the College is ensuring all our Healthcare Professionals, whether a Member of the College or not, have appropriate access to materials, guidance, and resources that will help inform their practice, and allow them to hold their standards up to the high expectations concerning patient care. You can find a wealth of such resources via our Patient Safety Resources.

Review of RCSEd Patient Safety Activity

The Patient Safety Group has used the SEIPS model to analyse RCSEd college activity; providing a global overview of the Colleges’ safety activity and delineating the many elements it can mobilise to meet safety demands. Find the full details of this review here.

If you have any enquiries about any aspect of RCSEd’s patient safety work, please contact

Joanna Woodward
Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh
Nicholson Street

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