Hi, and welcome to my blog! I'm Susan E. Mazer -- a knowledge expert and thought leader on how the environment of care impacts the patient experience. Topics I write about include safety, satisfaction, hospital noise, nursing, care at the bedside, and much more. Subscribe below to get email notices so you won't miss any great content.
December 2, 2016
And, how is patient safety evidenced beyond the accidents that do not happen?
Safety precautions are ever present in our daily lives. The wet floor caution sign in a public restroom; flashing lights on the road; the warnings at the end of drug commercials.
More critically for patients in the hospital, however, are the warnings and alerts for medication ordering using electronic medical records (EMRs). Or the protocols for preventing falls that seem inconvenient because the patient seems too healthy to need them.
Accidents happen because we do not think they will happen. They occur when we are so sure of ourselves or have otherwise prioritized our focus that we miss the obvious.
These seem obvious, right? Yet, too many errors are still made and patients assume that they are safe in the hands of experts. However, these three seemingly simple tasks indicate that mistakes may occur in plain sight.
So, how do patients experience safety? How does the patient experience include the palpable feeling of being safe and being kept safe?
Some thoughts for the healthcare staff to create a better patient safety experience:
Being open, obvious, and repetitive in demonstrating the relentless and ongoing concern about the welfare of patients and their family while they are in your hospital does help make the case that their safety is being handled.
Patient safety cannot be a covert intention. It cannot be subtle or hidden.
And, it involves even the simplest of tasks, like hand-washing. Use every opportunity to reassure and reinforce how critical every detail is.
Let your patients, their families, your co-workers, and others know that safety is not only a regulation and a risk, it is an ethic of practice.
To almost invoke the well-known quote from Ghandi, “Be the protection that you promise to your patients.”
P.S. If you like this post, please do me a favor and share on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, etc. Also to get automatic notices when a new post is published, subscribe (upper right). No spam – just great content. Thanks!