Ensuring patient safety has always been the primary goal of practices and other healthcare facilities. In order to fulfill this necessity, it is essential that the healthcare providers ensures safe environment through rigorous preparation, diagnosis, and execution of care. As the medical field progresses and continues to thrive, it becomes necessary to update the facility’s standard operating procedures to better suit the needs of patients.
Industry Facts State
Approximately one in five Americans (22%) have experienced some kind of medical error regarding patient safety
Around 44,000 to 98,000 people die each year as a result of preventable medical errors, and this may be just the tip of the iceberg
Between 5 to 10 percent of the patients admitted in the U.S. acute-care hospitals acquire one or more infections there
The patient safety mainly depends widely on the safety strategy, but practices and healthcare providers fail to implement these at the primary level. Although major focus on care is practiced in th hospitals, majority of the interaction takes place between individuals and their doctors, nurses, and other care providers.
Importance of patient safety:
Patient safety hasn’t always been a priority in our healthcare system. Incorporating patient safety will be a vital step in your practice, to help improve the quality of patient care significantly and cut healthcare costs. Even though our current health-care practices have sluggish approach towards ensuring patient safety, there’s great promise in incorporating patient safety in the practice.
Ensuring patient safety to improve your revenue:
Practices and health-care providers have always been aware of increasing requirements to be transparent and accountable for patient safety. If the national patient safety goals are not met and the Never event occur, the hospital has to pay for associated testing, drugs, and lengthened stay, as the insurance companies and government refuse to pay for the additional costs that should not have been incurred. Moreover, failing to meet national safety goals can mean being cited or losing accreditation — which is also an expensive proposition.
Some strategies to improve patient safety:
Implementing change to decrease adverse events and to increase patient safety can be difficult for hospitals and healthcare facilities to implement. Let us look at some of the strategies which can help your practice to improve the patient safety.
Good hand hygiene: Most of the transmission of health care-associated infections occur due to dirty hands. Hence, maintaining good hand hygiene is one of the important step in improving patient safety.
Use barrier precautions: Along with maintaining good hand hygiene, using barrier precautions like sterile gowns, gloves, and masks can reduce 1.7 million health care-associated infections in the U.S. each year, which tmay kill about 99,000 patients annually. Also, while placing central venous catheters or peripherally inserted central catheters, it is important that healthcare professionals use barrier precaution, and use full body drape on the patient.
Use checklists to reduce surgical complications: Use checklist to make sure that every single important thing has been done, and nothing accidentally neglected. Checklists also helps communicate vital information like patient's identity, the surgical site and type of procedure, anticipated problems, administration of antibiotic prophylaxis, etc. among members of the surgical team.
Avoid hazardous drug abbreviations: Using abbreviations for hazardous drugs can lead to many complicated errors. About 15,000 medication errors a year have been linked to using abbreviations such as “u” for “unit” and “q.d.” instead of “once daily.” Physicians should avoid using these commonly used abbreviations that jeopardize medication safety.
Do what is right for the patient: Focus on what is right for the patient and it will result in better patient care and outcomes and lower costs. Implementation of computerized physician order entry systems can also help you focus on patient safety and help physicians save a lot of money.
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