How Can Hospitals Improve Patient Safety?

Posted on July 31, 2015 by Shapiro Law Group


What can get hospitals a poor ranking with LeapFrog? The non-profit looks at evidence-based safety measures in place at hospitals, events reported by the institutions and patient readmission rates. However, there are ways to prevent medical mistakes and improve hospital safety.

Which Four Methods Can Improve Hospital Safety?

According to The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), there are multiple ways hospital safety can be improved.

  • Hospitals can improve by working with patient safety organizations. Patient safety organizations help hospitals avoid preventable medical mistakes and collect data on existing safety strategies.
  • Hospital staff must learn to work together as a team and have effective means of communicating with each other. AHRQ suggests using a toolkit called TeamSTEPPS so hospital staff can develop strategies to improve rapid response times.
  • Doctors and other health care professionals should consult with patients before discharging them. Patients should leave hospitals knowing their medication schedule and follow up appointment dates. AHRQ argues this would reduce the number of readmissions.
  • Shift durations should be shortened, so fatigued health care providers do not make harmful medical mistakes. AHRQ argues hospital staff working 30-hour shifts should cease treating patients after 16 hours and utilize a 5-hour sleep period.

Medical mistakes resulting from poor communication and fatigue might be prevented if hospitals adopted some of the methods mentioned by AHRQ. For more information on hospital mistakes, please continue exploring our website.

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Tags: PatientSafety


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