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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 28 Results
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October 10, 2022
Selected PSNet materials for a general safety audience focusing on improvements in the diagnostic process and the strategies that support them to prevent diagnostic errors from harming patients.
Eggenschwiler LC, Rutjes AWS, Musy SN, et al. PLoS ONE. 2022;17:e0273800.
Trigger tools alert patient safety personnel to potential adverse events (AE) which can then be followed up with retrospective chart review. This review sought to understand the variability in adverse event detection in acute care and study characteristics that may explain the variation. Fifty-four studies were included with a wide range of AEs detected per 100 admissions. The authors suggest developing guidelines for studies reporting on AEs identified using trigger tools to decrease study heterogeneity.
Alboksmaty A, Beaney T, Elkin S, et al. Lancet Digit Health. 2022;4:e279-e289.
The COVID-19 pandemic led to a rapid transition of healthcare from in-person to remote and virtual care. This review assessed the safety and effectiveness of pulse oximetry in remote patient monitoring (RPM) of patients at home with COVID-19. Results show RPM was safe for patients in identifying risk of deterioration. However, it was not evident whether remote pulse oximetry was more effective than other virtual methods, such as virtual visits, monitoring consultations, or online or paper diaries.
Giardina TD, Choi DT, Upadhyay DK, et al. J Am Med Inform Assoc. 2022;29:1091-1100.
Most patients can now access their provider visit notes via online portals and many have reported mistakes such as diagnostic errors or missed allergies. This study asked patients who may be “at-risk” for diagnostic error about perceived concerns in their visit notes. Patients were more likely to report having concerns if they did not trust their provider and did not have a good feeling about the visit. Soliciting patient concerns may be one way to improve transparency regarding diagnostic errors and trust in providers.
Perspective on Safety March 31, 2022

Errors in medication management and administration are major threats to patient safety. This piece explores issues with opioid and nursing-sensitive medication safety as well as medication safety in older adults. Future research directions in medication safety are also discussed.

Khoong EC, Sharma AE, Gupta K, et al. J Gen Intern Med. 2022;37:1270-1274.
In response to concerns about COVID-19 transmission, many ambulatory care visits have transitioned to telehealth visits. This commentary describes the impact of telehealth on diagnostic errors and medication safety in ambulatory settings. Recommendations to further understand the impact of telemedicine on patient safety include: systematically measuring patient safety outcomes and increasing reporting of safety incidents; identifying the patients and clinical scenarios with the greatest risk of unsafe telehealth care; identifying and supporting best practices to ensure equal access to safe telehealth.
Neves AL, van Dael J, O’Brien N, et al. J Telemed Telecare. 2021;Epub Dec 12.
This survey of individuals living in the United Kingdom, Sweden, Italy, and Germany identified an increased use of virtual primary care services – such as telephone or video consultation, remote triage, and secure messaging systems – since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. Respondents reported that virtual technologies positively impacted multiple dimensions of care quality, including timeliness, safety, patient-centeredness, and equity.
Blease CR, Kharko A, Hägglund M, et al. PLoS ONE. 2021;16:e0258056.
Allowing patients to access their own ambulatory clinical health record has benefits such as identification of errors and increased trust. This study focused on risks and benefits of patient access to mental health care records. Experts suggested the benefits would be similar to those seen in primary care, such as increased patient engagement, with the potential additional benefit of reduced stigmatization.

Graber ML, Schrandt S. Evanston, IL:  Society to Improve Diagnosis in Medicine;  September 8, 2021. 

This report summarizes the results of a project that examined how the literature and various stakeholders consider challenges and opportunities for improving diagnosis during telemedicine interactions. Both areas of concern and potential were highlighted to engage researchers, educators, and clinicians in the implementation and use of telediagnosis that is safe and of high-value for patients and families.

Patel J, Otto E, Taylor JS, et al. Dermatol Online J. 2021;27(3).

In an update to their 2010 article, this review’s authors summarized the patient safety literature in dermatology from 2009 to 2020. In addition to topics covered in the 2010 article, this article also includes diagnostic errors related to telemedicine, laser safety, scope of practice, and infections such as COVID-19. The authors recommend further studies, and reports are needed to reduce errors and improve patient safety.
Beach MC, Saha S, Park J, et al. J Gen Intern Med. 2021;36:1708-1714.
Physician language choice can reflect implicit biases, which can compromise patient care. In this study, researchers conducted a content analysis of 600 clinic notes to explore how physicians communicate disbelief in medical records and racial and gender differences in the use of such language. Three linguistic features suggesting disbelief were identified: (1) use of quotes (e.g., patient had a “reaction” to the medication), (2) use of judgement words – such as “claims” or “insists” – that imply doubt, and (3) reporting patient experiences as hearsay (e.g., “the patient reports that the symptom started yesterday"). The researchers found that these linguistic features were more common in notes written about Black patients compared to white patients; no gender differences were identified.
Park Y, Hu J, Singh M, et al. JAMA Netw Open. 2021;4:e213909.
Machine learning uses data and statistical methods to enhance risk prediction models and it has been promoted as a tool to improve healthcare safety. Using Medicaid claims data for a large cohort of White and Black pregnant females, this study evaluated approaches to reduce bias in clinical prediction algorithms for postpartum depression and mental health service utilization. The researchers found that a reweighing method in machine learning models was associated with a greater reduction in bias than excluding race from the prediction models. The authors suggest further examination of potentially biased data informing clinical prediction models and consideration of other methods to mitigate bias.
Keen J, Abdulwahid MA, King N, et al. BMJ Open. 2020;10:e036608.
Health information technology has the potential to improve patient safety in both inpatient and outpatient settings. This systematic review explored the effect of technology networks across health systems (e.g., linking patient records across different organizations) on care coordination and medication reconciliation for older adults living at home. The authors identified several barriers to use of such networks but did not identify robust evidence on their association with safety-related outcomes.
Han SM, Greenfield G, Majeed A, et al. J Med Internet Res. 2020;22:e23482.
Social distancing precautions due to the COVID-19 pandemic have led to increased use of telehealth. The authors of this systematic review conclude that there is insufficient evidence to determine whether remote prescribing in primary care changes antibiotic prescribing practices. Future research should further assess remote prescribing to ensure there are no negative impacts on antimicrobial stewardship.  
Jazieh AR, Akbulut H, Curigliano G, et al. JCO Glob Oncol. 2020;6):1428-1438.
Patients with chronic health needs, including those with cancer, and their providers face numerous challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic. Survey results from 356 health care centers across 54 countries indicate that the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on cancer care is widespread. Many centers reported challenges in delivering care, reduction in services, lack of personal protective equipment, staffing shortages, and limited access to medications. Respondents also reported potential patient harm due to interruptions in cancer-specific and non-cancer care.
Logan MS, Myers LC, Salmasian H, et al. J Patient Saf. 2021;17:e1726-e1731.
This article describes an innovative expert consensus process to generate a contemporary list of chart-review based triggers and adverse event measures for assessing the incidence of inpatient and outpatient adverse events. A panel of 71 experts from nine institutions identified 218 triggers and measures with high or very high clinical importance deemed suitable for chart review and 198 were found suitable for electronic surveillance; 192 items were suitable for both.   
Choudhury A, Asan O. JMIR Med Inform. 2020;8:e18599.
This systematic review explored how artificial intelligence (AI) based on machine learning algorithms and natural language processing is used to address and report patient safety outcomes. The review suggests that AI-enabled decision support systems can improve error detection, patient stratification, and drug management, but that additional evidence is needed to understand how well AI can predict safety outcomes.  

Smith KM, Hunte HE, Graber ML. Rockville MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; August 2020. AHRQ Publication No. 20-0040-2-EF.

Telehealth is becoming a standard care mechanism due to COVID-19 concerns. This special issue brief discusses telediagnosis, shares system and associate factors affecting its reliability, challenges in adopting this mode of practice, and areas of research needed to fully understand its impact. This issue brief is part of a series on diagnostic safety.