The Joint Commission has released Sentinel Event Alert 59, which addresses violence—physical and verbal—against healthcare workers. Patient Safety Monitor Journal spoke with Victoria Fennel, of Compass Clinical Consulting, about the alert and healthcare’s culture of violence.
It works like this: CMS catches wind of a severe safety violation at your facility and places it under IJ. You are then given a deadline to fix the problem and come up with a plan to ensure it never happens again—and if you don’t, CMS will revoke your facility’s Medicare and Medicaid funding.
With the increased importance placed on patient satisfaction, effective wayfinding has become even more central to supporting care. While signage is an essential part of wayfinding—that spatial art and science of guiding healthcare visitors to their destination—it’s but one of many tactics that form a part of an effective wayfinding strategy.
When people think of workplace violence in healthcare, they tend to think of loud verbal threats or fighting between patients and providers. However, no discussion on this topic is complete without taking into account gun violence.
Last October, the hospital was placed under immediate jeopardy following the death of a patient with dementia. DeKalb Medical officers self-reported the incident to CMS and released a statement saying they “want to make sure it never happens again.” The case has spurred a series of patient safety reforms, many of which seek to reduce overreliance on technology.
Hospitals can make their own policies, too. Institute a policy on opioid prescribing to relieve your providers of some decision-making pressure in an age of addiction awareness—and, if you do it right, your providers should still be able to give patients the pain relief they need.
Respondents to the 2018 Patient Safety & Quality Healthcare Industry Outlook Survey indicated that second victim support is an emerging issue, albeit one that many facilities have still not tackled.
The study authors say their findings suggest that “current initiatives to improve the use of antibiotics in outpatient settings may not be enough to change clinicians’ prescribing practices.” And they feel clinicians must be better equipped “with the tools and knowledge to know when antibiotics are needed.”
Once a quality improvement initiative has been launched, it can be difficult to keep it on track. Survey respondents were asked about the biggest challenges in maintaining quality initiatives in their organizations. The most cited challenge was the complexity of collecting and communicating a mass of rapidly shifting information with 50%.
A 2013 review of healthcare professionals as second victims, published in Evaluation & The Health Professions, concluded that nearly half of healthcare providers would fit this label at least once in their career. A 2017 survey of surgeons found that 80% recalled having at least one intraoperative adverse event within the past year of their practice. Those affected reported having experienced a substantial emotional impact on their well-being, including strong feelings of sadness, anxiety, and shame.