N300 Summer 2011
California State University, San Marcos
'Spread' remains challenge in patient safety improvement. (2011, May). Healthcare Benchmarks and Quality Improvement, 18(5), 49-52.
Patient safety is a top priority in health care, especially in a hospital setting. If errors are made in regards to patient safety, they could have dangerous consequences. Patients trust that specific systems are in place to protect them from human errors. For example, a nurse must perform three checks before administering a medication to a patient. The nurse must verify the patient’s name, the doctor’s orders, and the medication administration record. The nurse also verifies the name of the medication before giving it to the patient. These checks are followed to prevent harm to patients. This article was written to evaluate why patient safety improves in some areas within a hospital, but not others. Summary
Efforts to make hospitals safer for patients are not reaching their goals in all departments. Healthcare Benchmarks and Quality Improvement (HBQI) interviewed several experts concerning patient safety. The hospitals received a mixed report card; achieving excellence in some units, but not hospital wide. There is not only a huge variation between hospitals, but also within different units of the same hospital. The key question is how to get all hospitals to follow the best practice guidelines. Most experts agree that while awareness of the value of patient safety has improved, culture change has not. People understand what to do, but they need to prioritize and focus on it. Part of the problem is that people do not see all harm as preventable. People underestimate the damage healthcare workers can have on patients. People must be mindful of every action, which is not very realistic in a busy environment. In an ideal world, a continual feedback loop could...