Martin Bromiley is a Captain for a major UK airline and began his journey with Clinical Human Factors in 2007.
In 2005, Martin’s wife, Elaine died during a routine hospital procedure (see story). A subsequent independent review and Inquest established her death was the direct result of human factors and failings in non-technical skills, created by systemic failings in the healthcare system. Martin started to research the culture in healthcare around safety and human factors and recognised that although there were pockets of excellence the NHS was culturally a long way behind most other high risk industries.
As a result of his experiences he supported the making of a DVD entitled “Just a routine operation” (see video) which explored the lessons of his late wife’s death, as well as a BBC Horizon programme about human factors called “How to avoid mistakes in surgery”.
From here Martin founded the Clinical Human Factors Group, the non-profit making charitable trust which aims to advise and promote best practice around human factors. Since then the Group has promoted human factors at the highest levels in healthcare, making a significant contribution to current thinking. This can be seen through such initiatives as the establishment of the DoH Human Factors Reference Group, the National Quality Board Human Factors Concordat and latterly the formation of the Healthcare Safety Investigation Branch. More significantly though the term human factors and system safety are becoming much more commonly understood in healthcare.
In 2014 the New Statesman ran an extensive article on Martin’s contribution to healthcare and recently Times journalist and Olympic sportsman Matthew Syed used Martin’s story as the start and finish of his bestseller “Black Box Thinking”.
Martin’s work has been recognised through awards from the Royal College of Anaes-thetists, the Difficult Airway Society and the patient support group “Action Against Medical Accidents”. In the 2016 New Year Honours list Martin was awarded an OBE for his work to further patient safety.
Martin is still Chair of the CHFG and gives all his time for free (but donations to the CHFG are always welcome)!