Louise Batz

Protect yourself and loved ones with: COVID-19 Information

Unite for Safe Care Event: Learn More

End of Year Letter 2019

The Last Decade 2009-2019

  • Select a guide below to get the download link to our Batz Guides.
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

End of Year Letter 2019

A Letter From Laura Batz Townsend

Dear Friends,

This year, 2019, marks a decade since we founded the Louise H. Batz Patient Safety Foundation. These past ten years have been a life changing journey from tragedy to hope. Ten years ago, we lost my mom, Louise Batz, to a preventable medical error. She is one of the 400,000 precious lives lost each year to preventable medical errors, making it the third leading cause of death behind heart disease and cancer. Since the day we lost my mom, our mission has been to help prevent medical errors by ensuring that patients and families have the knowledge they need to promote a safe hospital experience for their loved ones, and to support innovative advancements in patient safety.

For the past ten years, we have been striving for patients, families, doctors, nurses, and other healthcare professionals to work together as a team to improve patient safety through education and support in our hospitals and communities, not only in Texas but across the country and around the world.

This holiday season, The Louise H. Batz Patient Safety Foundation wants to take a moment to thank all of you for  your incredible support these past ten years. I want to thank our amazing team, our board, nurses, doctors, hospital leadership, volunteers, patient safety leaders, advocates, friends and amazing family for all of your support.

Over the past ten years, we have gone on a journey from great tragedy to great hope! Because of your support:

  • We have raised over 2.5 millions dollars for patient safety;
  • We have published ten unique Batz Patient guides in English, Spanish and Dutch;
  • We have shared my Mom’s story across the United States, Europe, Canada and South America;
  • We developed an app you can download on iOS or android;
  • We have printed, downloaded and distributed over 40,000 guides to families and hospitals around the world;
  • We opened Batz Foundation Europe

We have made momentous strides these past ten years but there is much work to be done. To mitigate this epidemic, we must empower patients, improve health literacy, and advocate for the integration of patients and families into the healthcare team. There is a desperate need for tools to help patients and families better understand and monitor their health long-term. The medical world is very complex and requires a concerted effort by many individuals from different backgrounds to help drive down the staggering number of deaths due to preventable medical error each year.

The Louise H. Batz Patient Safety Foundation will work each and every day to achieve these goals. It starts with us, the community, the patient. The good news is that we don’t have to wait for the next brilliant scientist to discover the cure for cancer, Alzheimer’s, or other life-threatening disease. We can do something today, right now. My Mom’s death was preventable; it never had to happen. If I had only had the knowledge that I now possess, she would be alive today. No patient ever has to feel that they are starting at ground zero, we are here to help you through your entire healthcare journey.

Thank you so much for all of your support these past ten years. We could not have accomplished all that we have without you. Please take a moment to look through all of our accomplishments from 2009-2019 below. The future is bright! I hope you all have a wonderful holiday season with friends and family. I am so thankful for all of you, and most importantly, I am so thankful for my Mom. Her star is always shining brightly down on us and the journey that we are going on together to save lives.

In partnership,

Laura Townsend

Implementation and Research of the Batz Patient Safety Guides

Why It Matters

There is a 1 in 1,000,000 chance of a traveler being harmed while in an aircraft. In comparison, there is a 1 in 300 chance of a patient being harmed during a hospital or health care visit.
of medical expenses are wasted due to error and poor care.
Of every 100 hospitalized patients at any given time, 7 in developed and 10 in developing countries will acquire health care-associated infections.

Sadly, each year in our country, between 200,000 and 400,000 preventable deaths occur from medical errors, making it the third leading cause of death in the United States behind heart disease and cancer. The Department of Health and Human Services reports that chronically ill children are the most vulnerable, with roughly 1 in 6 entering the hospital this year falling victim to preventable errors. It is critical to properly educate patients and families to help their medical team provide the best care possible. We must support and enhance the quality of life as medical errors affect everyone and overwhelmingly impact those who suffer from the most complicated health diagnosis and the harshest financial burdens. There is a desperate need for tools to help patients and their families to better understand and monitor their lifelong healthcare.

Batz Patient Safety Guides

We have printed, downloaded and distributed over 40,000 guides to families and hospitals around the world. Because of the amazing support of our donors, we are able to offer the following tools:

Download Our Guides

Community Health Empowerment Project
Health Education and Advocacy Guide for Families

In 2013, a collaboration between the City of San Antonio Head Start Program, Louise H. Batz Patient Safety Foundation and The University of Texas College of Pharmacy was formed to explore innovative ways to empower Head Start families to seek quality and safe health care services. Head Start is a program dedicated to providing early childhood health, nutrition, and educational services to families that are predominantly low-income or meet other requirements (e.g., foster care, disability). The overall goal of this collaboration is to empower Head Start families to take an active role in their own health through improving and expanding the quality of health-related services provided by Family Support Workers (FSWs).

The collaboration began with an extensive needs assessment, in which the findings guided subsequent phases of the project. This led to the development of tools targeted for Head Start families, and resulted in the Community Health Empowerment toolkit. During every phase of the project, input was sought from Head Start leadership, FSWs, and the Head Start Advisory Council to guide tool development.

During the 2017-2018 school year, the Empower team launched the pilot phase of their Community Health Empowerment toolkits for Head Start families. The team analyzed data collected through internally-developed pre- and post-surveys and a focus group with family support workers (FSWs) at Head Start. Overall, the data was very positive and supports the acceptance and usage of the toolkit by both FSWs and Head Start families. The Empower team, consisting of Dr. Veronica Young, Dr. Megan Morrison, and Stephanie Luster, MPH, are continuing to work closely with Head Start leaders to revise the existing toolkit and develop ways to collect more data during the next phase of the project which expand to all families served by the City of San Antonio Head Start program, approximately 3,020 families.

Community Awareness

In 2019, we shared our story to advance patient safety across the country and internationally.


  • Safe Accountable Nursing Care Conference- San Antonio, TX
  • Anesthesia Patient Safety Foundation Conference- Phoenix, AZ
  • Baylor Scott & White Safety and Quality Summit
  • Patient Safety Movement Foundation Conference- Huntington Beach, CA
  • Dr. Veronica Young’s course “Culture of Patient Safety: Transforming Health Together”; University of Texas at Austin
  • One day workshop on PCC, 10 April 2019, Foro Centro Médico Imbanaco, Cali, Colombia
  • Presentation Planetree Model PCC, 12 April 2019, Foro Centro Médico Imbanaco, Cali, Colombia
  • Workshop on Leadership and PCC, 30 May 2019, Foro Organización para la Excelencia de la Salud, Cartagena de Indias, Colombia
  • Workshop on Patient Engagement, 13 September 2019, 10a Jornada Abierta del Foro Latinoamericano Colaborativo en Calidad y Seguridad en Salud, Buenos Aires, Argentina
  • San Antonio Nursing Consortium Award Ceremony
  • Mednax NEO Quality Collaborative- Aventura, FL
  • Vermont Oxford Network (VON) Quality Congress- Chicago, IL
  • IHI/NPSF Patient Safety Congress- Houston, TX May 2019
  • Hosted Film Screenings of “To Err is Human” with Panelists Mike Eisenberg, the Director and Dr. David Mayer, President of the Patient Safety Movement Foundation at UT Health Austin and UT Health San Antonio
  • National Head Start Conference- San Antonio, TX
  • Planetree International Conference on Person-Centered Care- Orlando, FL

Here is a list of conferences and speaking engagements the Batz Foundation is honored to have participated in from 2009-2018.

  • Anesthesia Patient Safety Foundation Summit Conference- Phoenix, AZ (2011)
  • University of Texas Health Science Center School of Nursing- San Antonio, TX (2011)
  • University of Texas Health Science Center 10th Annual Summer Institute on Evidence Based Practices- San Antonio, TX (2011)
  • Covidien National Sales Meeting- Dallas, TX (2011)
  • University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Patient Safety and Quality Symposium- Lancaster, PA (2014)
  • Patient Safety Science and Technology Summit- Laguna Beach, CA (2014, 2015)
  • Baylor University Medical Center’s Fab 50- Keynote Speaker (2014, 2015, 2017, 2018)
  • Planetree International Conference on Person-Centered Care (2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018)
  • CareFusion-Dallas (2015)
  • United States Airforce Nursing Corps- San Antonio, TX (2015)
  • Southern Command Center of the U.S. Army- Miami, FL (2015)
  • Association of Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC)- Nashville, TN (2015)
  • Patient Safety Week- SAMC (2015)
  • Patient Safety Conference-Rotterdam, Netherlands (2015)
  • University of Texas Health Science Center San Antonio Summer Institute: Engaging Patients and Professionals to advance Clinical Excellence- San Antonio, TX (2015)
  • Memorial Hermann System Executive Board and Leadership- Houston, TX (2015)
  • Institute of Healthcare Improvement – Orlando, FL (2015, 2016, 2017)
  • TENET Leadership Conference (2015)
  • Baptist Health System Leadership Conference (2015)
  • Medesalud- Medellín, Colombia (2016)
  • Patient Safety Movement Conference -Laguna Beach, California (2016, 2017)
  • University of Texas Health Science Center San Antonio-summer institute – Community Engagement and Healthcare Improvement (2016)
  • SXSW-Austin, TX (2016)
  • Steering Committee Meeting PSM- Washington DC (2016)
  • 25° International Meeting OES (Organization for Excellence in Healthcare) and 1° Latin American Foro ISQUA, Cartagena de Indias, Colombia.
  • 7o Foro “JORNADA ABIERTA”, Institute for Clinical Effectiveness and Health Policy (IECS), Buenos Aires, Argentina
  • “Making Health Care Measurement Patient-Centered: A Convening to Develop Principles and Strategies,” a convening sponsored by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, and California Health Care Foundation- Washington DC
  • Institute for Patient and Family Centered Care Moving Forward with Patient- and Family-Centered Care: An Intensive Training Seminar- San Antonio, TX
  • Baptist Health System School of Health Professions (2017)
  • International Foro on Patient Safety, Quality, and Person Centered Care- Cartagena, Colombia (2017)
  • The Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation (AAMI) Foundation (2017)
  • Patient Safety Movement Midyear meeting- Washington, D.C.(2017)
  • ISQUA conference- London, England (2017, 2018)

Ella’s Empower Project

For a school project, my oldest daughter, Ella, had special EMPOWER bracelets made to pass out to friends and family to help raise awareness for her grandmother, Louise, and patients everywhere.

Her goal with this campaign is to:

  • Create more bands and share them in our communities
  • Make sure that every patient that goes into hospital or every family member who has a loved one that goes to the hospital knows that they are EMPOWERED
  • To provide nurses and doctors across the country with bands to wear and to give out to patients as a way to show that everyone is on the same team and working toward the same goal.

Ella’s campaign raised $6,000! Thank you to all who have supported so far. From her inspiration, we developed the “Empower Flower” to go along with the bracelets while attending the ASPSF Conference in Phoenix, Arizona. At the conference, we were asked to develop a prototype that would create a culture that values all voices equally. Today, patients and caregivers encounter challenges in raising patient care issues in real time. We learned this causes patients, families and caregivers to feel inhibited about speaking up. It would be better if they had the EMPOWER FLOWER which is a tool that highlights actions for the entire team to overcome these barriers. It features strategies to allow us to speak up for patient safety; It features simple actions to allow everyone to speak up for safety.

Fundraising Events

Bingo de Mayo – raised a combined $1.2 million over the last 8 events
1st Annual Game Night – raised $110,000
Grants: $1.3 million awarded
Weezie’s Award Luncheon: $28,000
Schlitterbahn: $125,000

Hospital Partnerships

Hospital Distributions

North Central Baptist
Mission Trail Baptist
North East Baptist
Baptist Medical Center
Saint Luke’s Baptist
University Hospital San Antonio
Methodist Hospital
Seton Medical Center
University Hospital: Admin
UPMC Mercy – Seven Sisters Gift Shop
Pennsylvania Patient Safety Authority
Susan G. Komen
UPMC Passavant Cancer Center
University Hospital: Patient Relations
University Health System: Volunteer Services
Christus Health
Sammie Smith – First United Methodist Dallas
Circle of Cancer Care
Institute of Patient and Family- Centered Care
Griffin Hospital – The Hewitt Center for
Breast Wellness
Deer Lodge Medical Center
CHRISTUS Santa Rosa Hospital – Westover Hills
North Mississippi Medical Center
University of Michigan Health System
Sibley Memorial Hospital-Johns Hopkins Medicine
SSM Janesville Hospital
East Tennessee Children’s Hospital
Florida Hospital Heartland Medical Center
New Hanover Regional Medical Center
Galen College of Nursing
Barnes Jewish Hospital
State Collete of Florida
University of Pitsburgh Medical Center
Eisenhower Medical Center
Memorial Hermann Health System
Foundation For Healthy Communities
Baptist Health System School of Health Professions
Tenet Healthcare- Clinical Operations Department
Eisenhower Medical Center- Georgia

Children’s Hospitals

Methodist Children’s Hospital
University of Pitsburgh Medical Center
Pennsylvania Patient Safety Authority
Wave Healthcare
University Hospital
Pediatrics Administration
Institute of Patient and Family- Centered Care
Methodist Hospital Administration
Children’s National Patient Navigator Program
University Health System: Volunteer Services
Christus Health
University of Michigan Health System
Sibley Memorial Hospital-Johns Hopkins Medicine
Children’s Hospital of San Antonio
San Antonio Pediatric Developmental Services
SSM Janesville Hospital
East Tennessee Children’s Hospital
Children’s Home Care Group
Réseau Planetree Québec
Galen College of Nursing

Transplant Hospitals

University Health Systems
Methodist Children’s Hospital
Medical City Dallas
Transplants for Children
Wolff Center at UPMC
Institute of Patient and Family- Centered Care
University Health System: Volunteer Services

Technology, Marketing, & Social Media

Over the past year, the Batz Foundation focused efforts to enhance our website and mobile offerings. Throughout 2018, we:

  1. Added a market place to purchase Batz branded goods from shirts to mugs.
  2. Rolled out an updated Google Adwords campaign with 800 keyword Google adwords to direct individuals to the Foundation’s website.
  3. Made dramatic changes to our website, added a lead generation tool that enables guests to download a digital version of the Batz guide in exchange for their email addresses, and worked on adding video stories for our Weezie’s Angel award winners. Updated and adjusted the language for Spanish and Dutch pages.
  4. Created an online storefront for our guides to enable hospital partners and guests to order and ship guides on a regular or one-off basis, pay for the guides through the system and set up a recurring process.
  5. Moreover, began work to launch a Batz Europe website.

International Efforts


In 2018, the Batz Foundation embarked on an effort to establish a franchised branch in Europe. Led by Louis TerMeer, the branch will focus on developing patient safety materials and partnerships with institutions across Europe. While Batz Europe will be independent from the Louise Batz Patient Safety Foundation, members of the U.S. team will sit on the board of directors and ensure that all materials continue to share the same brand standards and that messaging is cohesive.

Latin America

Batz foundation completed a study of the implementation of an adapted Batz guide in Argentinian hospitals. The results from the study indicated that the guide is well received by patients while simultaneously demonstrating areas from the guide that should be removed for clarity.

Bingo De Mayo 2020

Save the Date!

Future Goals

For the past several months, we [Batz Foundation] have been in conversation with University Health System in San Antonio. University Health System is a nationally recognized academic medical center with a network of over 20 neighborhood healthcare clinics. University Health System is committed to delivering patient-centered and high quality healthcare, grounded in a solid foundation of outcomes-based research and innovative teaching led by the physician faculty at UT Health San Antonio.

For the past 10 years, the Batz Foundation has been instrumental in shaping and molding a vision for patient safety and education in healthcare. As a result of our conversations with the leadership at University Health System, they have embraced the development of a Patient and Family Resource Center at University Hospital. This Patient and Family Resource Center will offer support services and access to resources and education that empowers patients and their families, increases health literacy, and leads to improved patient outcomes.

We at the Batz Foundation are prepared to make a financial commitment to realize this shared dream.

The components of this new Patient and Family Resource Center at University Hospital would include prominent office space, dedicated professional staff to lead and develop this effort, and activities, resources and training for patients, families and healthcare professionals. The Center at University Health System will be a hub for innovation- where best practices in patient/healthcare provider education and patient safety are developed to share with other institutions.

While this new patient center is a primary focus in the upcoming year, we are also focused on:

  • Printing and distributing Batz Guides
  • Overhauling our website and creating a more mobile-friendly version of our materials for online use
  • Continuing to support the research of our EMPOWER team
  • And helping get Batz Europe off the ground.

Make your mark on patient safety!
Donate Now