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Search results for ""
US Food and Drug Administration. March 8, 2019.
Errors of commission during complex procedures can contribute to patient harm. Drawing from an analysis of medical device reports submitted to the Food and Drug Administration, this announcement seeks to raise awareness of common adverse events associated with surgical staplers and implantable staples. User-related problems include opening of the staple line, misapplied staples, and staple gun difficulties. Recommendations include ensuring availability of various staple sizes and avoiding use of staples on large blood vessels.
Greater Focus on Credentialing Needed to Prevent Disqualified Providers From Delivering Patient Care.
Washington, DC: United States Government Accountability Office; February 2019. Publication GAO-19-6.
Gaps in responding to concerns about clinician competence can result in care failures. This report examined Veterans Health Administration (VHA) actions associated with National Practitioner Data Bank records and found variation in how organizations responded to that information including some instances where VHA facilities inappropriately hired providers. The Government Accountability Office makes seven recommendations to address this problem.
Famolaro T, Yount ND, Hare R, et al. Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; February 2019. AHRQ Publication No. 19-0027-EF.
The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality developed the Nursing Home Survey on Patient Safety Culture to assess safety culture in long-term care facilities. This report summarizes survey data from nearly 10,500 staff working in 191 nursing homes. Respondents reported positive perceptions of resident safety and feedback and communication about incidents. Areas needing improvement included comfort with speaking up about safety concerns and sufficient staffing. As in prior studies of safety culture, managers reported higher safety culture scores compared to frontline staff. Most respondents reported that they would recommend the facility where they worked to friends and family. A past PSNet interview explored unique issues surrounding patient safety in the nursing home population.
AHRQ National Scorecard on Hospital-Acquired Conditions Updated Baseline Rates and Preliminary Results 2014–2017.
Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; January 2019.
Hospital-acquired conditions (HACs) represent a significant source of preventable harm to patients. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services financially penalizes hospitals with increased numbers of HACs through the Hospital-Acquired Condition Reduction Program. This policy of nonpayment has prompted hospitals to focus significant resources on preventing HACs. This AHRQ report found a reduction in HACs from 99 per 1000 acute care discharges to 86 per 1000 discharges between 2014 and 2017, representing a decrease in 910,000 HACs and savings of $7.7 billion. Declines in certain HACs such as adverse drug events and Clostridium difficile infections were noted to be more significant as compared to others. A past WebM&M commentary highlighted the clinical significance of HACs and described an incident involving a patient who developed a pressure ulcer while in the hospital.
Notice of Intent to Publish Funding Opportunity Announcement to Improve Care Transitions Through the Use of Interoperable Health Information Technology (R01).
Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; January 28, 2019. AHRQ Publication No. NOT-HS-19-009.
The introduction of information technology has transformed health care. This notice of intent from AHRQ announces an upcoming funding opportunity to support research exploring the adoption of interoperable information technologies to improve communication during transitions. The pending funding will help to refine and develop methods to assess implementation success.
FDA Safety Communication: caution when using robotically-assisted surgical devices in women's health including mastectomy and other cancer-related surgeries.
MedWatch Safety Alert. Silver Spring, MD: US Food and Drug Administration; February 28, 2019.
This announcement seeks to raise awareness of the potential risks associated with the use of robotic-assisted surgical devices in mastectomies or cancer-related care. Recommendations for patients who may seek to have robotically assisted surgery include asking about their surgeon's experience with these procedures and discussing benefits, risks, and alternatives regarding available treatment options with their health care provider. Suggestions for health care providers include completing specialized training on procedures they perform. A WebM&M commentary described the challenges and benefits associated with robotic surgery.
Washington, DC: United States Government Accountability Office; January 2019. Publication GAO-19-197.
Record matching problems can have serious clinical impacts on patients. This report explores how to optimize demographic data integrity to improve patient record matching, as identifying information is increasingly integrated into shared record keeping systems. The investigation determined strategies to improve matching such as implementing standard data formats and disseminating best practices.
Journal Article > Government Resource
Scholl L, Seth P, Kariisa M, Wilson N, Baldwin G. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2019;67:1419-1427.
This Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report provides drug and opioid overdose death figures for 2016. The rate of overdose deaths continues to rise, with the largest increase due to synthetic opioids such as fentanyl. The report calls for enhancing prevention and response measures, including the use of naloxone.
Levinson DR. Washington, DC: US Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Inspector General; November 2018. Report No. OEI-06-14-00530.
Frail populations cared for in long-term care facilities are at high risk for adverse events. This report from the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) analyzed Medicare data from 2008 to 2016 to determine the prevalence of adverse events in long-term care facilities and the resultant harm to residents. Nearly half of patients experienced adverse events or temporary harm events. A significant proportion of these events were considered serious, meaning that they led to prolonged stay, transfer to acute care, provision of life-saving intervention, or resulted in permanent harm or death. More than half of these events were found to be preventable and were attributed either to error or substandard care. The OIG recommends that patient safety efforts undertaken by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services specifically address long-term care facilities. A past WebM&M commentary discussed safety and quality of long-term care.
Strategy on Reducing Regulatory and Administrative Burden Relating to the Use of Health IT and EHRs.
Washington, DC: Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology; November 28, 2018.
Clinician burnout is a persistent threat to patient safety, and electronic health records have been identified as a high-profile contributor to the problem. This call for public comments on a draft report seeks insights on specific goals and recommended strategies to address the issue. The approaches outlined focus on reducing the time burden associated with frontline electronic health record use. The option for submitting comments is closed.
FDA Safety Communication: use caution with implanted pumps for intrathecal administration of medicines for pain management.
MedWatch Safety Alert. Silver Spring, MD: US Food and Drug Administration; November 14, 2018.
This safety announcement raises awareness of pump failures, dosing errors, and other potential safety issues associated with implanted pumps. Recommendations to enhance safety include review of medication labeling to select appropriate medicines and concentrations as well as open discussions with patients about risks associated with pump and medication options.
Tools/Toolkit > Government Resource
Itasca, IL: American Academy of Pediatrics; 2018.
Diagnostic error prevention in primary care is a persistent challenge. This AHRQ-funded toolkit provides guidance for ambulatory care organizations that seek to improve the reliability of diagnosis in children. The material focuses on tactics to enhance how practices recognize, track, and follow up on adolescent depression, pediatric elevated blood pressure, and actionable laboratory results.
Tools/Toolkit > Fact Sheet/FAQs
Gray D, Azam I. Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; October 2018. AHRQ Publication No. 18(19)-0033-4-EF.
The National Healthcare Quality and Disparities Reports review analysis specific to tracking patient safety challenges and improvements in areas of focus such as hospital-acquired infections. The most recent update documented more than two-thirds improvement in patient safety measures tracked. This set of tools includes summaries drawn from the reports for use in presentations to enhance distribution and application of the data.
Differences in strength expression on product labels of compounders and conventional manufacturers may lead to dosing errors.
Silver Spring, MD: US Food and Drug Administration; September 29, 2018.
Web Resource > Government Resource
QualityNet. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
Eliminating hospital-acquired harm requires policy, organizational, and individual approaches to motivate the necessary changes. This website provides information and data collected from a Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services financial incentive program reducing reimbursements to hospitals with elevated rates of hospital-acquired conditions.
Opioid-Related Inpatient Stays and Emergency Department Visits Among Patients Aged 65 Years and Older, 2010 and 2015.
Weiss AJ, Heslin KC, Barrett ML, Izar R, Bierman IR. HCUP Statistical Brief #244. Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; September 2018.
Polypharmacy, chronic conditions, and mental health needs can contribute to misuse of opioids. This data analysis from the AHRQ Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project found that opioid-related hospitalizations and emergency room visits for older Americans increased substantially between 2010 and 2015.
Audiovisual > Audiovisual Presentation
Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. July 25, 2018.
Tracking the intersection of organizational culture with health information technology use can inform patient safety improvement efforts. This webinar introduced supplemental items to the AHRQ Hospital Survey on Patient Safety Culture and discussed the results of a pilot project integrating the items into assessment efforts. Featured speakers included Dr. Jeff Brady and Dr. Tejal Gandhi.
Washington, DC: United States Government Accountability Office; July 2018. Publication GAO-18-137.
Both organizational and individual accountability are required to ensure safe care. This analysis of Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) responses to whistle-blower concerns and reports of staff misconduct found that the VA has procedures for investigating these allegations but determined that the process was unreliable. The report outlines recommendations for improvement including ensuring whistle-blowers are treated fairly and assigning responsibilities across the hierarchy to ensure incidents receive the appropriate attention.
London, UK: Royal College of Physicians; 2018. ISBN: 9781860167270.
Lack of appropriate staffing can diminish the safety and effectiveness of medical services. This report explored staffing levels in United Kingdom trusts for three tiers of expertise and found them to be inadequate across the system. The paper provides recommendations for staffing decisions for individual organizations and emphasizes the need for improved focus on care provision during routine working hours to support a healthy work force and safe patient care.
Hoffman RM, Mirarchi FL. PA-PSRS Patient Saf Advis. June 2018;15.
Patient harm associated with advance directive interpretation errors is rare, but these mistakes can have negative psychological consequences for care teams, patients, and families. Discussing research exploring factors that contribute to these misunderstandings, this article recommends actions to help patients articulate end-of-life care preferences and ensure those instructions are accurately shared with their families and the clinical teams acting on their behalf.