Education on Human Factors Principles

November 2006 to Present


HumanEra has developed various human factors lectures and workshops, including a Human Factors 101 workshop (HF101), to raise awareness of human factors concepts and to educate health care workers on how these principles can reduce adverse events in health care institutions. The goals of HumanEra’s lectures and workshops are to:

  • Define human factors for the health care context
  • Provide a systems view of risk and adverse events to facilitate a shift in health care culture
  • Empower staff to make health care safer

HF 101
Since the interactive, four-hour “HF101” workshop was first developed in 2006, it has been presented to thousands of health care workers including physicians, nurses, allied health, pharmacists, technicians, administrators, risk managers, safety officers, clinical engineers, students, facilities planners, and technology industry staff from across Canada.

Custom Lectures and Workshops
Building on the success of the HF101 course, the team has engaged with several organizations to develop customized workshops to meet specific needs (e.g. a course for pharmacists with a focus on medication safety). Sessions range from a 1h lecture to multi-day workshops and are usually case-based and involve interactive group exercises. Each session can cover a wide range of topics in human factors and patient safety, including:

  • Introduction to human factors
  • Human limitations (physical and cognitive)
  • Error prevention
  • Safety culture
  • Human factors design and evaluation methods
  • Group dynamics
  • Decision-making
  • Human factors informed procurement
  • Risk management frameworks
  • Medication safety

Course Curricula
HumanEra also develops custom curricula for course-based teaching. For example, the team developed the human factors module for the Canadian Patient Safety Institute’s Patient Safety Education Program, as well as developed an undergraduate human factors course for British Columbia Institute of Technology, called “BMET 8102 – Human Factors Engineering in Health”.

Participant evaluations of HumanEra’s courses are consistently positive, e.g.:

“Very interactive, thought provoking, and a workshop I would encourage everyone in the healthcare to attend.”

“I’ve been observing (and cursing) “bad design” for years. This is as an excellent workshop that gave me language to describe what we sometimes notice intuitively.”

“I will look at systems and designs differently.”

“I really enjoyed the Human Factors 101 workshop, very well presented. It really allowed me to have a better understanding of systems failure – not to place blame first.”

“Many presentations on [human factors] provide fascinating content, but fail to provide a practical application of the concepts. You two did a great job in taking that next step and addressing how these ideas can be used in a practical context.”

Past Audiences

  • Agencia Nacional de Vigilancia Sanitaria (ANVISA; Brazil)
  • Alberta Health Services
  • Association of Canadian Ergonomists
  • Baxter Canada
  • Canadian Medical and Biological Engineering Society (CMBES)
  • Canadian Patient Safety Institute (CPSI)
    1. Patient Safety Officer Course
    2. Patient Safety Education Program
    3. Forum on Patient Safety and Quality Improvement
  • Cancer Care Manitoba
  • Cancer Care Nova Scotia
  • Health Canada
  • Hospira Canada
  • Hospital do Coracao (Brazil)
  • Hospital for Sick Children
  • Hospital Sirio Libanes, Sao Paulo (Brazil)
  • Malaysian Ministry of Health
  • MedBuy
  • NexJ
  • Ministry of Health and Long Term Care
  • The Ottawa Hospital
  • Queensway Carleton Hospital
  • Technical University of Malaysia
  • University Health Network
  • University of Toronto
    1. Institute of Biomaterials and Biomedical Engineering (IBBME)
    2. School of Nursing
    3. Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation (HPME)
    4. Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering (MIE)
  • Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina, Florianopolis (Brazil)

Project Sponsor

Tony Easty