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PSNet: Patient Safety Network
Journal Article

Enhancing patient safety by integrating ethical dimensions to critical incident reporting systems.

Wehkamp K, Kuhn E, Petzina R, et al. BMC Med Ethics. 2021;22(1):26.

Clinicians are often confronted by ethical issues during the delivery of care. The authors outline four categories of critical incidents relevant to biomedical ethics – (1) patient-related communication, (2) consent, autonomy, and patient interest, (3) conflicting economic and medical interests, and (4) staff communication and corporate culture. The authors suggest that integrating these dimensions into existing incident reporting system processes (e.g., training risk managers and nurses to identify ethical incidents, involving an ethnical committee or specialists for clinical ethical consultations) may increase ethical behavior, patient safety, and employee satisfaction.