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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 - 20 of 3954 Results
Huff NR, Liu G, Chimowitz H, et al. Int J Nurs Stud Adv. 2022;5:100111.
Negative emotions can adversely impact perception of both patient safety and personal risks. In this study, emergency nurses were surveyed about their emotions (e.g., afraid, calm), emotional suppression and reappraisal behaviors, and perceived risk of personal and patient safety during the COVID-19 pandemic. Nurses reported feeling both positive and negative emotions, but only negative emotions were significantly associated with greater perception of risk.
Agarwal AK, Sagan C, Gonzales R, et al. J Am Coll Emerg Physicians Open. 2022;3:e12870.
Black patients who report experiencing racism in healthcare report poorer quality of care. In this text-message based study, Black and White patients discharged from the emergency department (ED) were asked about their overall quality of care and whether they perceived an impact of their race on their care. While Black patients reported high overall quality of care, 10% believed their race negatively impacted their care. The authors highlight the importance of asking about the impact of race on care to identify and reduce potential disparities.
Cresham Fox S, Taylor N, Marufu TC, et al. Intensive Crit Care Nurs. 2022;Epub Dec 3.
While many hospitals have rapid response teams (RRT) which can be activated by clinicians, only a few hospitals have also implemented programs which allow patients and families to activate RRT. This review identified 6 articles (5 interventions) with family-activated RRT in pediatric hospitals. The authors of the review conclude that family-activated RRT is a key component to family engagement and enhancing patient safety. Only one intervention was also available in a non-English language, which should be considered in future interventions.

Abelson R. New York Times. December 15, 2022.

Emergency department safety is challenged by factors such as production pressure, burnout, and overcrowding. This news article provides context for the 2022 AHRQ report Diagnostic Errors in the Emergency Department: A Systematic Review from the Johns Hopkins Medicine Evidence-based Practice Center (EPC) which synthesized the number of patients harmed while seeking emergency care.
Sutton E, Booth L, Ibrahim M, et al. Qual Health Res. 2022;32:2078-2089.
Patient engagement and encouragement to speak up about their care can promote patient safety. This qualitative study explored patients’ psychosocial experiences after surviving abdominal surgery complications. Findings highlight an overarching theme of vulnerability and how power imbalances between patients and healthcare professionals can influence speaking up behaviors.
Heesen M, Steuer C, Wiedemeier P, et al. J Patient Saf. 2022;18:e1226-e1230.
Anesthesia medications prepared in the operating room are vulnerable to errors at all stages of medication administration, including preparation and dilution. In this study, anesthesiologists were asked to prepare the mixture of three drugs used for spinal anesthesia for cesarean section. Results show deviation from the expected concentration and variability between providers. The authors recommend all medications be prepared in the hospital pharmacy or purchased pre-mixed from the manufacturer to prevent these errors. 
Bloomer A, Wally M, Bailey G, et al. Geriatr Orthop Surg Rehabil. 2022;13:215145932211256.
Opioid use by older adults increases the risk of falls. This study examined electronic health record data to determine the proportion of older adults presenting to the emergency room or urgent care due to a fall who receive an opioid prescription, particularly those with at least one risk factor for misuse. Nearly one third of patients received a prescription for an opioid and/or benzodiazepine, and 11% had at least one risk factor for misuse.
Skead C, Thompson LH, Kuk H, et al. Crit Care Res Pract. 2022;2022:4815734.
After-hours and weekend admissions to the hospital and intensive care units (ICU) have been linked to poor outcomes. This retrospective analysis compared outcomes among adult patients with daytime versus nighttime ICU admissions at one large Canadian medical center in between 2011 and 2015. Researchers found that overall mortality, but not ICU mortality, was higher among daytime admissions.
Erstad BL, Romero AV, Barletta JF. Am J Health Syst Pharm. 2023;80:87-91.
Weight-based dosing is vulnerable to error due to inaccurate estimation of body weight, use of metric vs. non-metric units, or patients being underweight or overweight. This commentary suggests strategies for reducing weight- and size-based dosing errors including reduction in reliance on estimated body weight, standardizing descriptor (e.g., body mass index), limiting options in the electronic health record (EHR), and integrating complex calculations into the EHR.

Newman-Toker DE, Peterson SM, Badihian S, et al. Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; December 2022. AHRQ Publication No. 22(23)-EHC043.

Although diagnostic accuracy in the emergency department (ED) is high, diagnostic errors still occur. This evidence review estimated that 1 in 18 ED patients receive an incorrect diagnosis, which translates to 7.4 million patients misdiagnosed every year (or 5.7% of all ED visits annually). Five conditions were found to be most vulnerable to misdiagnosis: stroke, heart attack, aortic aneurysm/ dissection, spinal cord injury and blood clots. The evidence review identified variation in diagnostic error rates across demographic groups; female sex and non-White race were often associated with increased risk for diagnostic errors. Serious misdiagnosis-related harms were often associated with clinician bedside judgement and other cognitive failures. 
Hailu EM, Maddali SR, Snowden JM, et al. Health Place. 2022;78:102923.
Racial and ethnic health disparities are receiving increased attention, and yet structural racism continues to negatively impact communities of color. This review identified only six papers studying the impact of structural racism on severe maternal morbidity (SMM). Despite heterogeneity in measures and outcomes, the studies all demonstrated a link between structural racism and SMM; additional research is required.
Almqvist D, Norberg D, Larsson F, et al. Intensive Crit Care Nurs. 2022;74:103330.
Interhospital transfers pose a serious risk to patients. In this study, nurse anesthetists and intensive care nurses described strategies to ensure safe transport for patients who are intubated or who may require intubation. Strategies include clear and adequate communication between providers prior to transport, stabilizing and optimizing the patient’s condition, and ensuring that appropriate drugs and equipment are prepared and available.
Feldman N, Volz N, Snow T, et al. J Patient Saf Risk Manag. 2022;27:229-233.
Research with medical and surgical residents has shown they are frequently reluctant to speak up about safety and unprofessional behavior they observe. This study asked emergency medicine residents about their speaking up behaviors. Using the Speaking Up Climate (SUC)-Safe and SUC-Prof surveys, residents reported generally neutral responses to speaking up, more favorable than their medical and surgical counterparts. In line with other studies, residents were more likely to speak up about patient safety than about unprofessional behaviors.
Byrd TE, Ingram LA, Okpara N. Womens Health (Lond). 2022;18:174550572211338.
Maternal near misses are associated with lower quality of life and poorer outcomes for the pregnant person and their family. In this study, 12 Black women who experienced a maternal near miss describe major contributors. They list communication problems, such as not being believed, their relationship with their provider, and provider discrimination as major contributors.
WebM&M Case December 14, 2022

A 62-year-old Spanish-speaking woman presented to the pre-anesthesia area for elective removal of a left thigh lipoma. Expecting a relatively simple outpatient operation, the anesthesiologist opted not to use a Spanish language translator and performed a quick pre-anesthesia evaluation, obtaining her history from the medical record. Unknown to the anesthesiologist, the patient was trying to communicate to him that she had undergone jaw replacement surgery and that her mouth opening was therefore anatomically limited.

WebM&M Case December 14, 2022

A 65-year-old man with metastatic liver disease presented to the hospital with worsening abdominal pain after a partial hepatectomy and development of a large ventral hernia. Imaging studies revealed perforated diverticulitis. A goals-of-care discussion was led by the palliative care service; the patient and his designated decision-makers chose to pursue non-operative management of diverticulitis.

WebM&M Case December 14, 2022

A 63-year-old woman was admitted to a hospital for anterior cervical discectomy (levels C4-C7) and plating for cervical spinal stenosis under general anesthesia. The operation was uneventful and intraoperative neuromonitoring was used to help prevent spinal cord and peripheral nerve injury. During extubation after surgery, the anesthesia care provider noticed a large (approximately 4-5 cm) laceration on the underside of the patient’s tongue, with an associated hematoma.

Henry Basil J, Premakumar CM, Mhd Ali A, et al. Drug Saf. 2022;45:1457-1476.
Medication administration errors (MAEs) are thought to be common in neonatal intensive care units (NICUs). This systematic review estimated that the pooled prevalence of MAEs among patients in NICU settings ranged from 59% to 65%. The review highlights both active failures (e.g., similar drug packaging or names) and latent failures (e.g., noisy environments, inaccurate verbal or written orders) contributing to MAEs.