BACKGROUND:A hospital culture that promotes and insures patient safety is a critical aspect for the effective delivery of hospital services and patient care. Yet there are significant patient health and safety issues in hospitals worldwide. This study aims to investigate doctors' and nurses' attitudes toward patient safety in the emergency departments (ED) of two Saudi hospitals. METHOD:A cross-sectional survey using a validated Safety Attitudes Questionnaire (SAQ) was used. Total of 503 ED doctors and nurses completed SAQ. Correlation analysis, using Spearman's Rho, was performed between the number of incidents reported and each dimension of the SAQ. RESULTS:The mean score of each SAQ dimension was < 75%, indicating that nurses and doctors generally had less than a positive safety attitudes. This was especially prominent with dimensions of stress recognition (58.1%) and perceptions of hospital management (56.9%). Furthermore, nurses reported significantly lower on the teamwork climate dimension than doctors (p < .01), whereas doctors reported significantly lower on the hospital work conditions dimension than nurses (p < .01). There was a significant negative correlation between the number of errors reported and teamwork climate, job satisfaction, and work conditions. CONCLUSION:Safety attitudes of doctors and nurses employed in EDs of Saudi hospitals are less than positive and correlate with the number of reported errors. Safety training interventions and management support would appear to be the most likely avenues to improve the safety attitudes and performance within Saudi ED's.