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1 - 20 of 1971

Institute for Safe Medication Practices

The perioperative setting is a high-risk area for medication errors, should they occur. This assessment provides hospitals and outpatient surgical providers a tool to examine their medication use processes and share data nationwide for comparison. Organizational participation can identify strengths and gaps in their systems to design opportunities that prevent patient harm. The deadline for submitting data is February 11, 2022.
Eiding H, Røise O, Kongsgaard UE. J Patient Saf. 2022;18(1):e315-e319.
Reporting patient safety incidents is essential to improving patient safety. This study compared the number of self-reported (to the study team) safety incidents during interhospital transport and the number of incidents submitted to the hospital’s reporting system. Nearly half of all patient transports had at least one self-reported incident; however, only 1% of incidents were reported to the hospital’s electronic reporting system.
Höcherl A, Lüttel D, Schütze D, et al. J Patient Saf. 2022;18(1):e85-e91.
Critical incident reporting systems (CIRS) are used to improve learning and patient safety. The aim of this study was to support future implementation of CIRS in primary care by discussing types of incidents that should be reported; who can report incidents (e.g., nurses, physicians, patients); whether reporting is mandatory or voluntary or both depending on incident severity; local versus central analysis; barriers and methods to overcome them; and motivation for reporting.

Washington, DC: United States Government Accountability Office; November 30, 2021. Publication GAO-22-105142.

Patient complaints have the potential to be used for care improvement as they surface problems in health facilities. This report examined complaint response processes in Veterans Affairs nursing homes and found them lacking. Five recommendations submitted to drive improvement underscore the value of adherence to policy and the transfer of complaint experiences to leadership.

Croke L. Guideline for prevention of unintentionally retained surgical items. AORN J. 2021;114(6):4-6. doi: 

Retained surgical items (RSI) are a never event, yet they continue to happen. This commentary summarizes recent changes to an existing guidance that defines a range of retained devices or products to coalesce with industry terminology. The author shares steps to reduce the potential for RSI retention. A related webinar will be held February 2, 2022.

The medication-use process is highly complex with many steps and risk points for error, and those errors are a key target for improving safety. This Library reflects a curated selection of PSNet content focused on medication and drug errors. Included resources explore understanding harms from preventable medication use, medication safety improvement strategies, and resources for design.

Mazor KM, Kamineni A, Roblin DW, et al. J Patient Saf. 2021;17(8):e1278-e1284.
Patient engagement and encouraging speaking up can promote safety. This randomized study found that patients undergoing cancer treatment who were randomized to an active outreach program were significantly more likely to speak up and report healthcare concerns than patients in the control group.

Wiig S, Haraldseid-Driftland C, Tvete Zachrisen R, et al. J Patient Saf. 2021;17(8):e1707-e1718.  

Families and next of kin are important partners in patient safety. In two Norwegian counties, next of kin who had lost a family member due to an adverse event participated in in-person meetings with inspectors as part of the regulatory investigation. This study explored the experiences and perspectives of the next of kin (Part 1) and regulatory inspectors (Part 2) involved in this new approach to next-of-kin involvement in regulatory investigations. Despite being an emotionally challenging process, next of kin viewed participation in the regulatory investigation as a positive experience and believed that their contributions improved the investigation process.
Stahl K, Groene O. PLoS ONE. 2021;16(12):e0259252.
Patient safety in ambulatory care is an emerging focus of measurement and improvement efforts. This cross-sectional study including patients from 22 ambulatory care practices in Germany found that nearly 3% of respondents had experienced a patient safety event during the last 12 months. The authors discuss how different approaches to voluntary reporting can influence measurement of patient experience.

Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; November 2021. AHRQ Pub. No. 22-0005.

This analysis of reports submitted by Patient Safety Organizations during the early months of the COVID pandemic found that patients testing positive for COVID-19 or being investigated for carrying the virus was the most frequently reported patient safety concern (26.6%). In addition, patients and staff being exposed to individuals who had tested positive for COVID-19 was identified as a patient safety issue in 18.2% of the records analyzed.
Shen L, Levie A, Singh H, et al. Jt Comm J Qual Patient Saf. 2021;Epub Oct 29.
The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated existing challenges associated with diagnostic error. This study used natural language processing to identify and categorize diagnostic errors occurring during the pandemic. The study compared a review of all patient safety reports explicitly mentioning COVID-19, and using natural language processing, identified additional safety reports involving COVID-19 diagnostic errors and delays. This innovative approach may be useful for organizations wanting to identify emerging risks, including safety concerns related to COVID-19.
Brenner MJ, Boothman RC, Rushton CH, et al. Otolaryngol Clin North Am. 2021;55(1).
This three-part series offers an in-depth look into the core values of honesty, transparency, and trust. Part 1, Promoting Professionalism, introduces interventions to increase provider professionalism. Part 2, Communication and Transparency, describes the commitment to honesty and transparency across the continuum of the patient-provider relationship. Part 3, Health Professional Wellness, describes the impact of harm on providers and offers recommendations for restoring wellness and joy in work.
Cohen SP, McLean HS, Milne J, et al. J Patient Saf. 2020;17(8):e1352-e1357.
Adverse event reporting by health care providers, including medical trainees, is critical to improving patient safety. At one children’s hospital, graduate medical education (GME) trainees submitted reports of greater severity than pharmacists and nurses, and identified system vulnerabilities not detected by other health care providers, such as errors in transitions of care, diagnosis, and care delays.
Okpalauwaekwe U, Tzeng H-M. Patient Relat Outcome Meas. 2021;12:323-337.
Patients transferred from hospitals to skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) are vulnerable to adverse events. This scoping review identified common extrinsic factors contributing to adverse events among older adults during rehabilitation stays at skilled nursing facilities, including inappropriate medication usage, polypharmacy, environmental hazards, poor communication between staff, lack of resident safety plans, and poor quality of care due to racial bias, organizational issues, and administrative issues.
Hegarty J, Flaherty SJ, Saab MM, et al. J Patient Saf. 2021;17(8):e1247-e1254.
Defining and measuring patient safety is an ongoing challenge. This systematic review explored international approaches to defining serious reportable patient safety incidents. Findings indicate wide variation in terminology and reporting systems among countries which may contribute to missed opportunities for learning. Serious reportable patient safety events were commonly defined as being largely preventable; having the potential for significant learning; causing serious harm or having the potential to cause serious harm; measurable and feasible to report, and; running the risk of recurrence.

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Centralized reporting and analysis of adverse events in health care is a safety improvement model from the aviation industry that has yet to be enabled in health care. This organization shares information to support the establishment of a national body charged with the  collection and monitoring of adverse event data to inform research and recommendations for medical error reduction.

Ackerman RS, Patel SY, Costache M, et al. Anesthesiology News. November 21, 2021.

Blame is known to limit discussions of near-misses and failures, which negatively impacts learning and incident reduction. This article describes work to examine blameful context present in anesthesiology incident documentation, reducing its viability as a successful investigation record. Length of text was identified as an enabler of blameful orientation, and limitations as to word count were one strategy to minimize the use of punitive language.