Patient complaints about hospital stays have been fairly consistent: sleep interruptions, communication glitches, loss of personal items and bad food….just to name a few! Hospital administrators and staff, on the other hand, have focused increased attention on patient safety. The advent of “Superbugs”, new potential pandemics and a change from “fee-for-service” to “pay for performance”, make patient safety even more of an urgent issue. It may surprise you to learn that there are 81 Patient Safety Organizations currently listed by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (part of The Department of Health and Human Services).
Other organizations have sprung up, like the non-profit California-based “The Patient Safety Movement” which held its first ever “Innovation Awards” in January 2016. The top three winners included solutions for regulating pediatric infusions, patient hand hygiene and bed sore prevention. Two of the three have already lined up facilities to integrate their solutions into their patient care. Innovations are only as good as their implementation, and implementation relies on a well-trained and educated staff. Education begins with a change in culture and it has been suggested that patient safety should be front and center in a health systems leader’s skill set.
How does your facility measure up? Are there Patient Safety specialists on staff? Will they be marking National Patient Safety Week? If yes, how? If not, what can you do to raise awareness? Post your feedback to this issue on our Facebook page and check our website for job opportunities in exclusive facilities that care about their patients!