Challenges and Realities in the Spanish National Health Service
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Patient Safety has become a key strategic priority for the Spanish National Health Service and as such has been included in the recently presented Quality Programme for the Spanish NHS. This programme sets out targets and specific actions with the Spanish Regional Health Authorities, with a view to promoting new synergies in the introduction of Safety policies designed to enhance the quality of healthcare at all levels.

Against this background, an International Conference on Patient Safety is to be held on November 15-16, 2006. With this Conference, the Spanish Ministry of Health and Consumer Affairs, and in particular the Quality Agency, aims to provide a forum for the sharing of information on relevant strategies and actions relating to Patient Safety Policies, based on the experience of the different health services and from an international perspective.

The Ministry of Health and Consumer Affairs will also take the opportunity provided by the Conference to present a declaration of support for the challenge launched by the World Patient Safety Alliance (WHO): "Clean Care is Safe Care".

We welcome all healthcare professionals, administrators, managers and all other persons with responsibilities in the healthcare sector to the Conference, which will without doubt provide an opportunity to share experiences and consolidate the bases for joint and committed action designed to enhance healthcare safety in the Spanish National Health Service.