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The PSNet Collection: All Content

The AHRQ PSNet Collection comprises an extensive selection of resources relevant to the patient safety community. These resources come in a variety of formats, including literature, research, tools, and Web sites. Resources are identified using the National Library of Medicine’s Medline database, various news and content aggregators, and the expertise of the AHRQ PSNet editorial and technical teams.

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Displaying 1 - 4 of 4 Results
Perspective on Safety October 1, 2017
… I'm not irreplaceable, but might make a patient sick.(J.E.S., unpublished data, 2015) The decision to come to work … to prioritize patient safety in this case the easy one. … Julia E. Szymczak, PhD … Assistant Professor of Epidemiology …
This piece explores the risks of presenteeism among health care workers and factors, such as cultural expectations, that contribute to its occurrence.
Szymczak JE. Sociol Health Illn. 2016;38:325-39.
This qualitative study analyzed how clinicians decide to speak up if they observe a safety breach (in this case, failing to follow infection control precautions). Although several factors influence this decision, the overarching conclusion is that the decision to speak up is strongly influenced by the context and immediate circumstances surrounding the incident in question. The willingness to speak up about safety concerns is a core component of safety culture.
Szymczak JE, Smathers S, Hoegg C, et al. JAMA Pediatr. 2015;169:815-821.
Health care workers often work while sick. This phenomenon, known as "presenteeism," has been implicated in outbreaks of health care–associated infections and is associated with burnout. Researchers surveyed physicians and advanced practice clinicians at a children's hospital. This study found that most clinicians reported working while sick, consistent with a prior study of presenteeism among resident physicians. Cultural and system factors resulted in pressure to work while ill, including a sense of not wanting to let colleagues or patients down by being absent and lack of support systems to provide coverage for sick clinicians. The accompanying editorial acknowledges the stigma that clinicians face if they take sick leave and calls for organizations to develop transparent and equitable policies and systems to combat presenteeism.
Szymczak JE. Soc Sci Med. 2014;120:252-9.
This ethnographic study describes how health care workers use patient safety culture to describe individual behaviors rather than social norms. The author contends that making reference to changing safety culture impedes implementation of some safety practices and places the onus for patient safety disproportionately on frontline staff, underscoring the challenges of measuring and addressing safety culture.