Accreditation

Experts to Senate panel: Patient safety remains a huge concern

Accreditation Insider, July 22, 2014

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In 1999, the Institute of Medicine released its To Err is Human report, which placed a harsh spotlight on the issue of patient safety and preventable deaths. Last week, a group of patient safety experts told the Senate Subcommittee on Primary Health and Aging that U.S. hospitals have not improved in the 15 years since that report, according to Modern Healthcare.

Ashish Jha, MD, MPH, a Harvard School of Public Health professor, told the panel that hospitals are not safer for patients than they were in 1999. “We have not moved the needle in any demonstrable way overall. No one is getting it right consistently,” he said.

The IOM report famously estimated as many as 98,000 patients die each year from preventable events, but a recent study in the Journal of Patient Safety placed that figure at approximately 400,000 per year. The experts told the Senate panel that hospitals need reliable data, metrics, and monitoring systems to provide accurate outcome comparisons, as well as accountability and incentives to improve safety.

Read the article here.



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