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Farnborough, UK: Healthcare Safety Investigation Branch; September 9, 2021.

In-depth failure investigations provide improvement insights for individuals and organizations alike. This report analyzes a collection of UK National Health Service incident examinations and provides recommendations for improvement on themes related to care transitions and access, decision making, communication, and point-of-care activity.
Carrillo I, Mira JJ, Guilabert M, et al. J Patient Saf. 2021;17:e529-e533.
While prior research has shown patients want disclosure of adverse events, healthcare providers may still be hesitant to disclose and apologize. Factors that influence providers’ willingness to disclose errors and apologize include organizational support, experience in communicating errors, and expectations surrounding patient response. A culture of safety and a clear legal framework may increase providers’ willingness to disclose errors and apologize.

This commentary presents two cases highlighting common medication errors in retail pharmacy settings and discusses the importance of mandatory counseling for new medications, use of standardized error reporting processes, and the role of clinical decision support systems (CDSS) in medical decision-making and ensuring medication safety.

Khan NF, Booth HP, Myles P, et al. BMC Health Serv Res. 2021;21.
This study assessed how and when quality improvement (QI) feedback reports on prescribing safety are used in one general practice in the UK. Four themes were identified: receiving the report, facilitators and barriers to acting upon the report, acting upon the report, and how the report contributes to a quality culture. Facilitators included effective dissemination of reports while barriers included lack of time to act upon the reports. As most practitioners indicated the QI reports were useful, efforts should be made to address barriers to acting upon the reports.

Silver Spring, MD: US Department of Health and Human Services, Food and Drug Administration, Center for Devices and Radiological Health. May 20, 2021.

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) suites harbor unique hazards that can harm patients, should process missteps occur. This report shares assessment steps to assure that medical devices are labeled appropriately to support their safe use in the MRI environment and encourages organizational reporting of problems encountered when testing device use.
Adie K, Fois RA, McLachlan AJ, et al. Eur J Clin Pharmacol. 2021;77:1381-1395.
Community pharmacists play an important role in patient safety. In this longitudinal study, community pharmacists reported 1,013 medication incidents, mainly at the prescribing and dispensing stages. Recommended prevention strategies included improved patient safety culture, adherence to organizational policies and procedures, and healthcare provider education.

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. April 2021.

Safe diagnosis in medical offices is challenged by staff workload, communication, and poor information sharing. This Supplemental Item Set for the AHRQ Surveys on Patient Safety Culture™ (SOPS®) Medical Office Survey (MOSOPS) examines elements contributing to time availability, testing and referrals, and provider and staff communication, and is to be used in conjunction with AHRQ Surveys on Patient Safety Culture™ (SOPS®) Medical Office Survey. The Diagnostic Safety Supplemental Item Set was released in time for the scheduled Fall 2021 MOSOPS data submission.
Fröding E, Gäre BA, Westrin Å, et al. BMJ Open. 2021;11:e044068.
In Sweden, patient suicide following contact with a healthcare provider is regarded a potential case of patient harm and must be investigated and reported to the Swedish supervisory authority. This retrospective study analyzed reported cases across three timeframes and concluded the investigations were largely suited to fit the requirements of the supervisory authority rather than an opportunity for organizational learning to advance patient safety. A 2019 PSNet Spotlight Case highlights systems issues that contributed to a patient’s suicide following discharge from the Emergency Department.    
Biquet J-M, Schopper D, Sprumont D, et al. J Patient Saf. 2021;17:e1738-e1743.
Few medical humanitarian organizations have patient safety reporting and analysis systems. Interviews with medical and paramedical staff working in international humanitarian organizations expressed high expectations for organizational leadership to establish clear patient safety and medical error management policies.  
Shaw J, Bastawrous M, Burns S, et al. J Patient Saf. 2021;17:30-35.
Patients who have fallen in their homes and are found by a home healthcare worker are referred to as “found-on-floor” incidents. This study found that length of stay was a key theme in found-on-floor incidents and signaled underlying system-level issues, such as lack of informational continuity across the continuum of care (e.g., lack of standard documentation across settings, unclear messaging regarding clients’ home care needs), reliance on home healthcare workers instead of rehabilitation professionals, and lack of fall assessment follow-up. The authors recommend systems-level changes to improve fall prevention practices, such as use of electronic health records across the continuum of care and enhanced accountability in home safety.  

The Leapfrog Group.

Examination of diagnostic failure and identification of reduction strategies require multidisciplinary expertise to be successful. This collaborative initiative will initially develop educational materials to inform health care organization adoption of diagnostic improvement best practices. Building on that experience, a survey component to complement the Leapfrog annual survey will be developed to enhance measurement and motivate improvement.
Ricci-Cabello I, Gangannagaripalli J, Mounce LTA, et al. J Patient Saf. 2021;17:e20-e27.
Patient safety in primary care is an emerging focus. This cross-sectional study across primary care clinics in England explored the main factors contributing to patient-reported harm experiences. Factors included incidents related to communication, care coordination, and incorrect or delayed; diagnosis and/or treatment.

Phipps D, Ashour A, Riste L, et al. The Pharmaceutical Journal. 2020;305(7943, 7944). November 10, December 1, 2020.

Dispensing mistakes are a common contributor to preventable adverse events in community pharmacies. Part 1 of this two-part series discusses factors that contribute to dispensing errors and summarizes methods for managing risks stemming from missteps. Part 2 focuses on preventing situations that enable errors and the role pharmacists have in minimizing dispensing errors in daily practice.
Sundwall DN, Munger MA, Tak CR, et al. Health Equity. 2020;4:430-437.
This study surveyed 9,206 adults across the United States about their perceptions of medical errors occurring in ambulatory care settings. Thirty-six percent of respondents perceived that their doctor has ever made a mistake, provided an incorrect diagnosis, or given an incorrect (or delayed) treatment. According to these findings, patient-perceived medical errors and harms occurred most commonly in women and those in poor health with comorbid conditions.  
Gallagher TH, Boothman RC, Schweitzer L, et al. BMJ Qual Saf. 2020;29:875-878.
Communication-and-resolution programs (CRP) emphasize early disclosure of adverse events and proactive approaches to resolving patient safety issues. This editorial discusses strategies for successful implementation of CRPs highlighted in prior research, including its prioritization by institutional leadership, investment in tools and resources necessary for implementation, and the use of metrics to track CRP functioning. 
Rogith D, Satterly T, Singh H, et al. Appl Clin Inform. 2020;11:692-698.
Lack of timely follow-up of test results is a recognized patient safety problem in primary care and can lead to missed or delayed diagnoses. This study used human factors methods to understand lack of timely follow-up of abnormal test results in outpatient settings. Through interviews with the ordering physicians, the researchers identified several contributing factors, such as provider-patient communication channel mismatch and diffusion of responsibility.
Sharma AE, Yang J, Del Rosario JB, et al. Jt Comm J Qual Patient Saf. 2021;47:5-14.
Ambulatory care settings are receiving increased attention as a focus for patient safety improvements. Using data from a multistate patient safety organization (PSO) database, the researchers sought to characterize patterns and characteristics of patient safety incidents reported in ambulatory care settings. Analyses found that 5.9% of events resulted in severe harm and 1.9% resulted in patient death. Over half of the events were from outpatient subspecialty care; fewer events occurred in home/community (5.2%), primary care (2.1%), or dialysis (2.0%) settings. Medication-related events were most common, followed by clinical deterioration and falls. Predictors of higher harm included diagnostic errors, patient/caregiver challenges, and events occurring in home/community or psychiatric settings. These results can help ambulatory care settings target safety events and develop systems-level prevention strategies.  
Kulju S, Morrish W, King LA, et al. J Patient Saf. 2022;18:e290-e296.
Patient misidentification can lead to serious patient safety risks. Researchers used patient safety reports and root cause analyses (RCA) to characterize patient misidentification events in the Veterans Health Administration (VHA). The incidence of patient misidentification in inpatient and outpatient settings was similar and most commonly attributed to the absence of two unique patient identifiers. The authors identified three strategies to mitigate misidentification based on high-reliability principles: (1) develop policies for patient identification throughout the continuum of care, (2) develop policies to report and monitor patient misidentification measures, and (3) apply quality and process improvement tools to patient identification emphasizing use by front line staff.  

London, UK: The Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman; July 15, 2020. ISBN 9781528620666.

Patient and family complaints can provide insights into system weaknesses if managed effectively. This report examined complaint handling at the United Kingdom National Health Service. The analysis found that lack of training, consistency and learning orientation reduced the effectiveness of the effort.