Thesafety of patients and quality of the therapeutic services are someof the key priorities of all health care facilities. The process ofenhancing patients’ safety and maintaining the quality of healthcare services calls for the reduction of treatment errors that may becaused by different factors, such as poor incident reportingprocedures, staff workload, and fatigue (Reid, 2009). The primaryobjective of creating the patient safety plan is not to eliminate allmistakes, which may be impossible, but to put in place a preventivesystem in the realm of staff errors and trapping errors before theyharm the patient (Islam, 2014). Improving patient safety is one ofthe key goals of the health care sector, which include increasedaccess, cost control, and enhanced patient safety (Groszkruger &Dfashrm, 2010). The present patient safety pan contains the detailsof the measures that will be taken to correct the bad patient outcomeand client safety violations that have been experienced in the recentpast at ABC Hospital. The plan will focus on the present situation,future improvement, and how changes will be accomplished.
Generalobjectives of the patient safety plan include
Todevelop a framework for recognition and reporting of risks thataffect patient safety and medical errors.
Toenhance communication, documentation, and reporting of performanceimprovement as well as patient safety activities to theorganizational administration, members of staff, and relevantgoverning members.
Toestablish the balance between treatment outcomes and patient safetyin the organization.
Toenhance teamwork as well as the group responsibility in the processof adopting and implementing opportunities for health careimprovement.
Toencourage the existence of workplace environment that promote blamefree reporting, support patient safety, and facilitate disclosure ofinformation and issues related to errors.
Topromote effective clinical as well as organizational decision making.
Tocoordinate and focus the organization wide performance enhancementand client safety initiatives.
Minimizingunjustified variations in health care delivery
Diversityof health care workforce is the major cause of variations in servicedelivery and adherence to the world’s best practices (Scarborough,Sirio & Kane, 2012). Although change is encouraged in the healthcare sector, the health care facilities should only embracevariations that enhance patient safety and improve the treatmentoutcome. There are four strategies that will be used to reduceunwarranted variations at ABC Hospital as explained in this section.
Focusingon clinical networks
Clinicalnetworks are established with the objective of bringing thestakeholders in the health care sector together to ensure that theywork in a collaborative way that enhance the outcome of servicesdelivered to clients (State Government of Victoria, 2014). Atpresent, the main activities of clinical networks vary depending onthe needs that have been identified by each network. Some of the mainactivities include the development of clinical standards, review ofclinical innovations, and sponsoring the establishment of theinformation system in the health care sector. The hospital will beheavily informed by the stakeholders about the best practices thatcan be used to improve the quality of service delivery, outcome andclient safety. This will be accomplished through further developmentand improvement of functional clinical networks.
Theprocess of quality improvement
Activitiesfor designing and improving the clinical process in ABC Hospital takeplace at the departmental level. The primary role of the HospitalPractice Improvement department is to provide the leadership role inmaintaining patient safety, quality services, and improved outcome.The process of improving the quality of services offered by thehospital should focus on three clinical indicators, namely the typeof care (preventive, chronic, and acute), function (such asscreening, diagnosis, treatment, and follow-up), and modality(including physical examination, laboratory study, and medication)(Mainz, 2003 and Martinez, 2000). Quality improvement will beaccomplished by providing the leadership role that will facilitatethe development as well as the spread of skills and competency inquality enhancement methodologies for the hospital.
Increasingthe availability of information about the best contemporary practices
Thehospital’s health clinicians can access up-to-date information atthe point of care through the health care providers’ knowledgenetwork website. In addition, health care providers have access toevidence-based information that supports the patients’ qualitycare, which is available in the hospital library. Increasedavailability of information about the best practices enhances theclinicians’ ability to make decisions about patients’ health care(Courtney & McCutcheon, 2010). Although the health care providershave access to up-to-date information, the hospital will enhancetheir access to a wider range of information about the bestpractices. This will be achieved through the intranet connectivitythat will enhance clinicians’ access to information about the bestpractices within the organization and some links to different onlinelibraries. The information on the best practices will be expanded toenhance the accessibility of pathways on the best practices thatcovers a wide range of health care conditions. In addition, creatinga greater awareness among the health care providers about theinformation available will be important to ensure that they adopt thebest practices as they emerge in the market.
Thedevelopment of safety and quality culture
Enhancingthe workplace culture through the evaluation of workers’ opinion
Workplaceculture is one of the key determinants of how individual members ofstaff and work teams perform, which in turn affects the patientsatisfaction, outcome, and safety (Reid, 2009). ABC hospital hasbeen conducting the workplace employee opinion survey, which helps inthe collection of essential information that is used in improving theworkplace culture and funding of cultural change initiatives. Thehospital will prioritize the improvement of the workplace culturewith the objective of making it a place where experienced health careproviders want to work, and this will improve the health careoutcomes. This will be accomplished by conducting the staff opinionsurvey in every two years in order to evaluate the effectiveness ofthe previous strategies and develop new ones that will enhance theworkplace culture.
Healthcare development education service
Acontinuous professional development as well as medical education isvital to maintaining a high standard that is expected from healthcare professionals (The State Government of Queensland, 2013).Although some health care professionals have a negative attitudetowards continuous staff development, health care facilities shoulddevelop a culture that supports employee training and development(Cooper, 2004). Currently, the hospital provides educational programsto its staff within its premises. However, the continuous decline inthe quality, outcome of health care services and patient safety callsfor an increase in employee training and development. This will bedone by increasing the range and accessibility of staff developmentprograms. The new programs to be added include evidence-basedpractice training, quality practice and measurement, clinicalleadership, patient safety, effective communication, and clinicalskills and pathways. In addition, the hospital will enhance theaccessibility of the staff development programs by making themavailable online.
Curriculumfor patient safety
Amulti-professional client safety curriculum supports the educationand training of health care providers on the priority client safetyprinciples and concepts (World Health Organization, 2014). The highexpectations of patients for high quality services can be met byencouraging the health care providers to improve their educationaland professional status (Yfantis, Tiniakou &Yfanti, 2010). ABCHospital has been offering several training courses (including rootcause analysis, patient safety and human error, client safety cultureanalysis, and open disclosure) to its members of staff with theobjective of enhancing their performance. However, these courses haveneither been properly coordinated nor considered as educationalapproaches. These courses will be targeted, coordinated, linked tobehavioral and attitudinal changes that are required for successfulimprovement in patient safety. This will be accomplished through thedevelopment of a framework for patient safety curriculum, which willbe scalable, relevant, cost-effective, comprehensive, and flexible.The new framework will be based on existing educational programs, butwith a few improvements in order to ensure that the currentchallenges (including the decline in patient safety and poortreatment outcome) are properly addressed.
Theuse of simulation as an intervention for patient safety
Simulationof programs before their implementation ensures that these programsachieve the intended goals. Program simulation enhances soundjudgment as well as critical thinking, which is needed to ensure thatcertain programs are purposefully designed and implemented (Ertmer,Strobel & Cheng, 2010). Although ABC Hospital has been planningand implementing changes in the past, simulation is rarely practiced.Any proposed changes will be simulated to ensure that theirimplementation will enhance patient safety and team function. Intradepartment methodologies of learning will be developed wheresimulation will be considered as an effective tool for learning. Thesimulation will be used as a safety and change managementintervention.
Thedevelopment of the health care providers’ skills
Improvingthe skills of health care providers is one of the key interventionsthat can be used to counter the challenge of the decline in patientsafety and treatment outcome. Employee training programs offered bythe health care facilities improves clients’ satisfaction and theprocess of goal setting (Michimata, Suzukamo, Izumi, 2013).Currently, poor access to both non-technical and technical trainingis hindering the capacity of health care providers to offer safehealth care services. An increase in the access of refresher,pre-professional, and professional training in a competency blendedlearning program (such as simulation training) will equip the healthcare providers with the necessary skills to comply with safetyregulations and improve the quality of services delivered to theirclients. This will be achieved by designing and constructing aneducational training center from where the newly developed blendedtraining resources will be accessed. The learning programs will besubjected to the ongoing research and evaluation to ensure that theymaintain the quality of the highest standard.
Implementationof safety strategies
Enhancingcommunication patient referral and handover
Communicationis an effective tool that can be used to reduce patient harms thatresult from communication issues. Research shows that 11 % ofpreventable undesirable events that result in disability are causedby communication problems in the health care facilities (WHO, 2007).In addition, failures in clinical handovers increase the chances forthe occurrence of harm to patients. This means that the hospitallacks effective tools for staff communication and handover betweenmembers of staff. In this regard, the hospital will systematicallyimprove communication, especially the handover of client informationbetween the health care providers. This will be accomplished byproviding the health care providers with standard evidence-basedhandover intervention facilities, such as electronic dischargesummaries and pre-operative briefings. Moreover, the hospital willexpand the delivery of packages (such as communication and patientsafety and crisis resource management) on effective communication ina health care set-up. This will ensure that the health care providersaddress the exact problems affecting the client, thus enhancing thetreatment outcome and avoiding harm that may result from medicationerrors.
Managementof client complaints
Healthcare facilities, similar to other organization, receive volumes offeedback from consumers of their services, some of which arecomplaints while others are complements. The decline in the treatmentoutcome and quality of services offered to patients are the majorcauses of complaints in the hospital. According to Uusitalo, Hakala &Kautonen (2008) the approach used by organizations to addresscustomer complaints determines the public perception about theorganization. ABC Hospital will facilitate and attend to customerfeedback in ways that will transform the hospital into a transparentand leads to quality improvement. This will be pursued by increasingreporting capabilities, involvement with consumer bodies, and bestpractices that encourage the recognition of consumer feedback. Thehospital will review the standards, policy, and supporting materials,including the complaint form and a website with the objective ofmaking the tools consumer friendly.
Thepatient safety plan promotes and supports the values, missions, andvisions of health care facilities. A well designed client safetyplant facilitates the implementation of the culture of patientsafety. Although ABC Hospital has been using several strategies (suchas staff training) to enhance patient safety, these approaches havenot been effective. The strategies contained in this plan aredesigned to encourage the staff responsibility and accountability inmatters related to consumer safety in all hospital practices. It isevident that most of the strategies are coupled with employeetraining to equip them with the necessary skills to implement theclient safety strategies. The successful implementation of thesesafety strategies will ensure that patients receive quality services,which will improve the treatment outcome and reduce the occurrence ofavoidable harms.
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