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Toolkits

Patient safety toolkits provide practical applications of PSNet research and concepts for front line providers to use in their day to day work. These toolkits contain resources necessary to implement patient safety systems and protocols.

Latest Toolkits

NIHCM Foundation. Washington DC: National Institute for Health Care Management. August 2, 2022.

Preventable maternal morbidity is an ongoing challenge in the United States. This infographic shares general data and statistics that demonstrate the presence of racial disparities in maternal care that are linked to structural racism. The resource highlights several avenues for improvement such as diversification of the perinatal staffing and increased access to telehealth.

Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; July 2022.  AHRQ Publication No. 22-0038.

Diagnostic improvement continues to gain focus as a goal in health care. The Measure Dx tool provides teams with guidance and strategies to detect and learn from diagnostic errors in their organizations. It includes a checklist to gauge readiness for implementation, measurement strategies, and recommendations for analyzing data and translating findings into front line care. 

Rockville, MD: Agency for Health Quality and Research; June 2022.

The potential for workplace violence degrades patient and staff safety. AHRQ is developing a survey item set that will help nursing homes identify and improve factors associated with workplace safety. The Workplace Safety Supplemental Item Set will assess the extent to which nursing homes’ organizational culture supports workplace safety. The new supplemental item set can be administered optionally at the end of the SOPS Nursing Home Survey. AHRQ will build this new measure of workplace safety upon its existing and highly successful SOPS program. This announcement calls for nursing homes to participate in a pilot study to test the application of the supplemental item set in the field.

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. 

Effective measurement of diagnostic error is essential for understanding the problem and generating improvements. The Common Formats provide a standard terminology for voluntary reporting of diagnostic errors to patient safety organizations. This website provides access to tools supporting use of the Common Formats that include forms and a users' guide.

All Toolkits (18)

1 - 18 of 18 Results

Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; 2021.

The AHRQ Surveys on Patient Safety Culture™ (SOPS®) Hospital Survey Hospital Survey on Patient Safety Culture ask health care providers and staff about the extent to which their organizational culture supports patient safety. The release of the Workplace Safety Supplemental Item Set for use in conjunction with the AHRQ Hospital Survey helps hospitals assess how their workplace culture supports workplace safety for providers and staff. Included with the data set is a report of the pilot test of the finding.

National Confidential Inquiry into Suicide and Safety in Mental Health. Manchester, UK: University of Manchester; May 31, 2021

System failures require multifactorial assessment to install targeted improvements. This toolkit examines 10 areas of focus for organizations to assess the safety of mental health services in emergent and primary care settings to minimize patient suicide and self-harm. Areas of focus include post-discharge follow-up, admissions, and family engagement.
Tools/Toolkit

Betsy Lehman Center. September 2021.

Clinicians involved in adverse events that harm patients can struggle to come to terms with error. This toolkit is designed to assist organizations in the development of initiatives to support clinicians and staff after an adverse event. Areas of focus include leadership buy-in, policy development, and training. An implementation guide is also provided.
Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; October 2020.
The AHRQ Surveys on Patient Safety Culture™ (SOPS®) Medical Office Survey collects information from outpatient providers and staff about the culture of patient safety in their medical offices. The survey is intended for offices with at least three providers, but it also can be used as a tool for smaller offices to stimulate discussion about quality and patient safety issues. The survey is accompanied by a set of resources to support its use. The data submission window for 2021 is now closed.

AHA Physician Alliance. Chicago, IL: American Hospital Association. February 2021. 

Human factors engineering approaches improve safety, efficiency, and effectiveness in both normal and challenging times. This tool shares a human-factors structured approach to improving technology integration and adaptation into work processes to reduce burnout and its negative effects on worker and clinician wellbeing. 

Boston, MA:  Institute for Healthcare Improvement; 2020.

Hospital crisis management, preparation, and planning are of heightened interest due to the COVID-19 emergency. This assessment tool examines hospital readiness for the patient surge due to the pandemic. The assessment tool helps organizations examine support structures, monitoring, infection control, supply and space capabilities, and staff support mechanisms to proactively address concerns to prepare for future challenges.
Multi-use Website

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). March 2020.

This website provides a report and data repository representing medical offices that administered the AHRQ Surveys on Patient Safety Culture™ (SOPS®) Medical Office Survey on Patient Safety (SOPS) Culture. Insights on safety culture reflect practices from 1,475 medical offices and more than 18,000 respondents.
Duke Center for Healthcare Safety and Quality.
Improving teamwork and communication is a continued focus in the hospital setting. This toolkit is designed to help organizations create a culture that embeds teamwork into daily practice routines. Topics covered include team leadership, learning and continuous improvement, clarifying roles, structured communication, and support for raising concerns.
Canadian Patient Safety Institute: 2019.
Structured approaches to managing negative psychological consequences of medical errors on health care professionals, patients, and families are important for emotional healing and organizational learning. This webinar series featured discussions on peer support efforts and a toolkit for Canadian health care workers.
Tools/Toolkit
NHS Improvement. London, UK: National Health Service; March 15, 2018.
Although focusing on system failure has been highlighted as key to improving patient safety, individual behaviors must also be recognized as contributors to risks. This guide provides tactics for managers to address concerns associated with practitioner performance that arise during incident investigations. The guide helps managers initiate constructive conversations with clinical staff when their performance creates conditions for unsafe care delivery.
Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; May 2016.
Traditionally, health systems have disclosed adverse events to patients only through a lengthy process that involves providing limited information to patients and families, avoiding admissions of fault, and emphasizing protection of the clinicians involved. This approach may harm safety culture and has been criticized as not being patient-centered. Some pioneering institutions, such as the University of Michigan Health System, began implementing an alternative approach known as "communication and resolution," which emphasizes early disclosure of adverse events and proactive attempts to reach an amicable solution. Early adopters of this method have achieved notable results, including a decline in malpractice lawsuits. The CANDOR toolkit, developed by AHRQ as part of the Medical Liability Reform and Patient Safety Initiative, provides tools for health care organizations to implement a communication-and-resolution program. The toolkit includes videos, slides, gap analysis assessments and teaching materials. It has been tested in 14 hospitals in several different states. A PSNet interview with the chief risk officer of the University of Michigan Health System discusses the organization's pioneering efforts to implement a communication-and-response system.
Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; October 2020.
Ambulatory surgery centers are increasingly being used to provide surgical care. The AHRQ Surveys on Patient Safety Culture™ (SOPS®) Ambulatory Surgery Center Survey seeks opinions from the field regarding safety culture in the ambulatory surgical center environment. The survey is presented with additional resources to help organizations assess their safety culture, including the results of a pilot program testing the survey and a user's guide.
Government Resource
National Health Service England; NHS; NHS Resolution
Although victims of adverse events have clearly expressed their preferences for full error disclosure, most physicians remain uncomfortable with disclosing and apologizing for errors. This leaflet offers information to help clinicians understand the value of effective apologies along with tips for organizations to support open disclosure efforts.
Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; June 2013.
Studies have shown that a surprisingly large proportion of hospitalized patients are not aware of their diagnoses or treatment plan and that their preferences are often not taken into account in advanced care planning. This failure to provide patient-centered care indicates a need for increased patient engagement in safety and quality efforts. This toolkit published by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality is designed to help hospitals develop partnerships with patients around improving safety. Developed with input from clinicians and patients, the guide emphasizes four strategies—working with patients as advisors, improving bedside communication, integrating patients and families into shift changes, and using patient input to improve the discharge process. An AHRQ WebM&M perspective by Dr. Saul Weingart discusses the practical challenges of engaging patients in improvement efforts.
Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; July 2018.
The AHRQ Surveys on Patient Safety Culture™ (SOPS®) Community Pharmacy Survey and accompanying toolkit were developed to collect opinions of community pharmacy staff on the safety culture at their pharmacies.
Government Resource

Washington, DC: US Department of Defense, Patient Safety Program.  

This toolkit provides a checklist, a planning guide, and other tools to help address disruptive staff behavior.
Measurement Tool/Indicator
Classic
Rockville MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; 2020.
Culture has been described as a key to establishing high reliability organizations. The National Quality Forum's Safe Practices for Healthcare and the Leapfrog Group both mandate hospitals to regularly assess their safety culture. This AHRQ Web site provides validated safety culture survey tools (Hospital, Medical Office, Nursing Home, Community Pharmacy, Ambulatory Surgery Center) and user guides health care organizations can use to implement the surveys. Organizations can also use the AHRQ database to compare their Surveys on Patient Safety Culture™ (SOPS®) results. In addition, reports are available that summarize the benchmarking data across cohorts nationwide. An AHRQ WebM&M perspective discussed how to establish a safety culture.
Department of Health and Human Services, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Department of Defense.
Effective teamwork plays an essential role in providing safe patient care. The Team Strategies and Tools to Enhance Performance and Patient Safety (TeamSTEPPS) program was developed in collaboration by the United States Department of Defense and AHRQ in order to support effective communication and teamwork in health care. This updated version of the widely implemented program provides new tools to measure its impact, supports increased emphasis on the role of effective communication in team training, and includes a new course management guide. Teamwork training programs have been shown to improve knowledge and attitudes, but have received mixed reviews on their effectiveness in changing behaviors. An AHRQ WebM&M commentary discussed how improved teamwork and shared decision-making might have prevented the unnecessary placement of a peripherally inserted central catheter that led to significant complications.