Dr. Jan Davies is a Professor of Anesthesia, Cumming School of Medicine, an Adjunct Professor of Psychology, Faculty of Arts, at the University of Calgary, and an anesthesiologist with Alberta Health Services in the Department of Anesthesiology, Perioperative and Pain Medicine, Calgary Zone. Dr. Davies has an MSc in Experimental Surgery from the University of Alberta, and an MD from the University of Calgary. She completed her Anesthesia training at Dalhousie University and a Killam Foundation Fellowship at the University of Manitoba, after which she joined the medical staff at the Foothills Medical Centre.
Since 1983 Dr. Davies has undertaken research in system safety, in healthcare and then in industry. She has been a consultant to, and testified in inquiries and inquests for, various Canadian provincial medical examiners and coroners. She has also been a consultant to a major Canadian airline, an Australian aviation safety organization, Health Canada, the Australian Department of Health and Ageing, the Canadian Patient Safety Institute, Alberta Health Services and the Health Quality Council of Alberta. In addition to numerous published peer-reviewed articles, editorials, book chapters, and a book and a website for patients about anesthesia, she has produced and/or co-written the scripts for several educational videos for anesthesiologists, and given many presentations on a variety of topics in both healthcare and aviation.
Her current healthcare research includes refinement of the methodology she first developed in the early 1980s to investigate events in which patients were nearly or actually harmed, and her methodology to review the actions of individuals involved in those same events. This methodology has also been used to analyze healthcare systems proactively, looking for hazards that can lead to harm. In addition, she is actively engaged in Human Factors research focused on healthcare equipment, particularly with respect to the standardization of anesthetic equipment in the Operating Room.
Her current aviation research is in crash survivability. She is the Chair of IBRACE, the International Board for Research into Aircraft Crash Events and has been a member of the Cabin Safety Group, International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO). She and her fellow Board members contributed the evidence-based content and illustrations for the new recommendations for the aviation brace for impact positions for passengers and cabin crew, which now form Chapter 6 of the ICAO Manual on Information and Instructions for Passenger Safety (ICAO Doc 10086). She and other IBRACE members have also published peer-reviewed papers, one of which provides aviation crash investigators with two new aviation accident investigation questionnaires for passenger and crew survival factors and injuries, to assist them in their investigations of passenger and crew survivability. She is a Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society.