Accurate Measurement In California's Safety-Net Health Systems Has Gaps And Barriers.
ABSTRACT: Patient safety in ambulatory care has not been routinely measured. California implemented a pay-for-performance program in safety-net hospitals that incentivized measurement and improvement in key areas of ambulatory safety: referral completion, medication safety, and test follow-up. We present two years of program data (collected during July 2015-June 2017) and show both suboptimal performance in aspects of ambulatory safety and questionable reliability in data reporting. Performance was better in areas that required limited coordination or patient engagement-for example, annual medication monitoring versus follow-up after high-risk mammograms. Health care systems that lack seamlessly integrated electronic health records and patient registries encountered barriers to reporting reliable ambulatory safety data, particularly for measures that integrated multiple data elements. These data challenges precluded accurate performance measurement in many areas. Policy makers and safety advocates need to support the development of information systems and measures that facilitate the accurate ascertainment of the health systems, patients, and clinical tasks at greatest risk for ambulatory safety failures.
Project description:OBJECTIVES:Data on patient safety problems (PSPs) in ambulatory care are scarce. The aim of the study was to record the frequency, type, severity and point of origin of PSPs in ambulatory care in Germany. DESIGN:Retrospective cross-sectional study. SETTING:Computer-assisted telephone interviews with randomly recruited citizens aged ?40 years in Germany who were asked about their experiences with PSPs in ambulatory care. PARTICIPANTS:10 037 citizens ?40 years. MEASURES:A new questionnaire was developed to record patient experiences with PSPs in ambulatory care. The study reported here targets patient experiences in the last 12 months. The questionnaire focuses on PSPs in seven areas of medical treatment: anamnesis/diagnostic procedures; medication; vaccination, injection, infusion; aftercare; outpatient surgery; office administration; other areas. For each PSP reported, detailed questions were asked about the specialist group concerned, and, on the most serious harm, the severity of the harm and its consequences. The target parameters are presented as proportions with 95% CIs. RESULTS:1422 of the respondents (14%) reported 2589 PSPs. The areas most frequently affected by PSPs were anamnesis/diagnostic procedures (61%) and medication (15%). General practitioners accounted for 44% of PSPs, orthopaedists for 15% and internists for 10%. 75% of PSPs were associated with harm, especially unnecessarily prolonged pain or deterioration of health; 35% of PSPs led to permanent harm. 804 PSPs (32%) prompted patients to see another doctor for additional treatment; 255 PSPs (10%) required inpatient treatment. CONCLUSION:PSPs experienced by patients are widespread in ambulatory care in Germany. The study reveals in which areas of medical treatment efforts to prevent PSPs could make the greatest contribution to improving patient safety. It also demonstrates the valuable contribution of patient reports to the analysis of PSPs.
Project description:Patients and caregivers play a central role in health care safety in the hospital, ambulatory care setting, and community. Despite this, interventions to promote patient engagement in safety are still underexplored. We conducted an overview of review articles on patient engagement interventions in safety to examine the current state of the evidence. Of the 2,795 references we evaluated, 52 articles met our full-text inclusion criteria for synthesis in 2018. We identified robust evidence supporting patients' self-management of anticoagulation medications and mixed-quality evidence supporting patient engagement in medication and chronic disease self-management, adverse event reporting, and medical record accuracy. Promising modes of patient engagement in safety, such as anticoagulation management and patient portal access, are not widely implemented. We discuss major implementation priorities and propose directions for future research and policy to enhance patient partnership within safety efforts.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Transfusion and clinical laboratory services are high-volume activities involving complicated workflows across both ambulatory and inpatient environments. As a result, there are many opportunities for safety lapses, leading to patient harm and increased costs. Organizational techniques such as voluntary safety event reporting are commonly used to identify and prioritize risk areas across care settings. Creation of functional, standardized safety data structures that facilitate effective exploratory examination is therefore essential to drive quality improvement interventions. Unfortunately, voluntarily reported adverse event data can often be unstructured or ambiguously defined.<h4>Results</h4>To address this problem, we sought to create a "best-of-breed" patient safety classification for data contained in the Duke University Health System Safety Reporting System (SRS). Our approach was to implement the internationally recognized World Health Organization International Classification for Patient Safety Framework, supplemented with additional data points relevant to our organization. Data selection and integration into the hierarchical framework is discussed, as well as placement of the classification into the SRS. We evaluated the impact of the new SRS classification on system usage through comparisons of monthly average report rates and completion times before and after implementation. Monthly average inpatient transfusion reports decreased from 102.1?±?14.3 to 91.6?±?11.2, with the proportion of transfusion reports in our system remaining consistent before and after implementation. Monthly average transfusion report rates in the outpatient and homecare environments were not significantly different. Significant increases in clinical lab report rates were present across inpatient and outpatient environments, with the proportion of lab reports increasing after implementation. Report completion times increased modestly but not significantly from a practical standpoint.<h4>Conclusions</h4>A common safety vocabulary can facilitate integration of information from disparate systems and processes to permit meaningful measurement and interpretation of data to improve safety within and across organizations. Formation of a "best-of-breed" classification for voluntary reporting necessitates an internal examination of localized data needs and workflow in order to design a product that enables comprehensive data capture. A team of clinical, safety, and information technology experts is necessary to integrate the data structures into the reporting system. We have found that a "best-of-breed" patient safety classification provides a solid, extensible model for adverse event analysis, healthcare leader communication, and intervention identification.
Project description:To improve neonatal patient safety through automated detection of medication administration errors (MAEs) in high alert medications including narcotics, vasoactive medication, intravenous fluids, parenteral nutrition, and insulin using the electronic health record (EHR); to evaluate rates of MAEs in neonatal care; and to compare the performance of computerized algorithms to traditional incident reporting for error detection.We developed novel computerized algorithms to identify MAEs within the EHR of all neonatal patients treated in a level four neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) in 2011 and 2012. We evaluated the rates and types of MAEs identified by the automated algorithms and compared their performance to incident reporting. Performance was evaluated by physician chart review.In the combined 2011 and 2012 NICU data sets, the automated algorithms identified MAEs at the following rates: fentanyl, 0.4% (4 errors/1005 fentanyl administration records); morphine, 0.3% (11/4009); dobutamine, 0 (0/10); and milrinone, 0.3% (5/1925). We found higher MAE rates for other vasoactive medications including: dopamine, 11.6% (5/43); epinephrine, 10.0% (289/2890); and vasopressin, 12.8% (54/421). Fluid administration error rates were similar: intravenous fluids, 3.2% (273/8567); parenteral nutrition, 3.2% (649/20124); and lipid administration, 1.3% (203/15227). We also found 13 insulin administration errors with a resulting rate of 2.9% (13/456). MAE rates were higher for medications that were adjusted frequently and fluids administered concurrently. The algorithms identified many previously unidentified errors, demonstrating significantly better sensitivity (82% vs. 5%) and precision (70% vs. 50%) than incident reporting for error recognition.Automated detection of medication administration errors through the EHR is feasible and performs better than currently used incident reporting systems. Automated algorithms may be useful for real-time error identification and mitigation.
Project description:Patient safety is a major concern in healthcare systems worldwide. Although most safety research has been conducted in the inpatient setting, evidence indicates that medical errors and adverse events are a threat to patients in the primary care setting as well. Since information about the frequency and outcomes of safety incidents in primary care is required, the goals of this study are to describe the type, frequency, seasonal and regional distribution of medication incidents in primary care in Switzerland and to elucidate possible risk factors for medication incidents.We will conduct a prospective surveillance study to identify cases of medication incidents among primary care patients in Switzerland over the course of the year 2015.Patients undergoing drug treatment by 167 general practitioners or paediatricians reporting to the Swiss Federal Sentinel Reporting System.Any erroneous event, as defined by the physician, related to the medication process and interfering with normal treatment course.Lack of treatment effect, adverse drug reactions or drug-drug or drug-disease interactions without detectable treatment error.Medication incidents.Age, gender, polymedication, morbidity, care dependency, hospitalisation.Descriptive statistics to assess type, frequency, seasonal and regional distribution of medication incidents and logistic regression to assess their association with potential risk factors. Estimated sample size: 500 medication incidents.We will take into account under-reporting and selective reporting among others as potential sources of bias or imprecision when interpreting the results.No formal request was necessary because of fully anonymised data. The results will be published in a peer-reviewed journal.NCT0229537.
Project description:The extent of preventable medication-related hospital admissions and medication-related issues in primary care is significant enough to justify developing decision support systems for medication safety surveillance. The prerequisite for such systems is defining a relevant set of medication safety-related indicators and understanding the influence of both patient and general practice characteristics on medication prescribing and monitoring.The aim of the study was to investigate the feasibility of linked primary and secondary care electronic health record data for surveillance of medication safety, examining not only prescribing but also monitoring, and associations with patient- and general practice-level characteristics.A cross-sectional study was conducted using linked records of patients served by one hospital and over 50 general practices in Salford, UK. Statistical analysis consisted of mixed-effects logistic models, relating prescribing safety indicators to potential determinants.The overall prevalence (proportion of patients with at least one medication safety hazard) was 5.45 % for prescribing indicators and 7.65 % for monitoring indicators. Older patients and those on multiple medications were at higher risk of prescribing hazards, but at lower risk of missed monitoring. The odds of missed monitoring among all patients were 25 % less for males, 50 % less for patients in practices that provide general practitioner training, and threefold higher in practices serving the most deprived compared with the least deprived areas. Practices with more prescribing hazards did not tend to show more monitoring issues.Systematic collection, collation, and analysis of linked primary and secondary care records produce plausible and useful information about medication safety for a health system. Medication safety surveillance systems should pay close attention to patient age and polypharmacy with respect to both prescribing and monitoring failures; treat prescribing and monitoring as different statistical processes, rather than a combined measure of prescribing safety; and audit the socio-economic equity of missed monitoring.
Project description:Background:Ambulatory medication reconciliation can reduce the frequency of medication discrepancies and may also reduce adverse drug events. Patients receiving dialysis are at high risk for medication discrepancies because they typically have multiple comorbid conditions, are taking many medications, and are receiving care from many practitioners. Little is known about the potential benefits of ambulatory medication reconciliation for these patients. Objectives:To determine the number, type, and potential level of harm associated with medication discrepancies identified through ambulatory medication reconciliation and to ascertain the views of community pharmacists and family physicians about this service. Methods:This retrospective cohort study involved patients initiating hemodialysis who received ambulatory medication reconciliation in a hospital renal program over the period July 2014 to July 2016. Discrepancies identified on the medication reconciliation forms for study patients were extracted and categorized by discrepancy type and potential level of harm. The level of harm was determined independently by a pharmacist and a nurse practitioner using a defined scoring system. In the event of disagreement, a nephrologist determined the final score. Surveys were sent to 52 community pharmacists and 44 family physicians involved in the care of study patients to collect their opinions and perspectives on ambulatory medication reconciliation. Results:Ambulatory medication reconciliation was conducted 296 times for a total of 147 hemodialysis patients. The mean number of discrepancies identified per patient was 1.31 (standard deviation 2.00). Overall, 30% of these discrepancies were deemed to have the potential to cause moderate to severe patient discomfort or clinical deterioration. Survey results indicated that community practitioners found ambulatory medication reconciliation valuable for providing quality care to dialysis patients. Conclusions:This study has provided evidence that ambulatory medication reconciliation can increase patient safety and potentially prevent adverse events associated with medication discrepancies.
Project description:Medication safety presents an ongoing challenge for nurses working in complex, fast-paced, intensive care unit (ICU) environments. Studying ICU nurse's medication management-especially medication-related events (MREs)-provides an approach to analyze and improve medication safety and quality.The goal of this study was to explore the utility of facilitated MRE reporting in identifying system deficiencies and the relationship between MREs and nurses' work in the ICUs.We conducted 124 structured 4-hour observations of nurses in three different ICUs. Each observation included measurement of nurse's moment-to-moment activity and self-reports of workload and negative mood. The observer then obtained MRE reports from the nurse using a structured tool. The MREs were analyzed by three experts.MREs were reported in 35% of observations. The 60 total MREs included four medication errors and seven adverse drug events. Of the 49 remaining MREs, 65% were associated with negative patient impact. Task/process deficiencies were the most common contributory factor for MREs. MRE occurrence was correlated with increased total task volume. MREs also correlated with increased workload, especially during night shifts.Most of these MREs would not be captured by traditional event reporting systems. Facilitated MRE reporting provides a robust information source about potential breakdowns in medication management safety and opportunities for system improvement.
Project description:OBJECTIVES:New specialty drugs such as biologics are now available in record numbers, presenting increased safety risks for people with immune-mediated diseases. However, comprehensive assessments of patient safety for these drugs are lacking. We examined performance on key patient safety measures, such as screening for latent tuberculosis (LTBI), hepatitis B virus (HBV), and hepatitis C virus (HCV), for new users of a broad group of specialty medications. METHODS:Data were extracted via electronic health record data warehouses of a large university health system using structured queries, and extensive chart review was performed to confirm measure elements. We included all new users of immunosuppressive specialty drugs between 2013 and 2017. We assessed screening for LTBI, HBV, and HCV from 12?months before through 60?days after medication initiation, and calculated performance on a composite measure that required screening for all three infections. Multivariable logistic regression was used to assess differences in screening across specialties, adjusting for patient race, sex, age, and comorbidities. RESULTS:Among 2027 patients, the most common drugs prescribed were adalimumab (32%), etanercept (24%), infliximab (19%), and ustekinumab (9%). Overall, 62% of patients were screened for LTBI, 42% for HBV, and 33% for HCV. Only 26% of patients were screened appropriately for all three infections. Screening patterns differed significantly according to treating specialty. CONCLUSIONS:We found gaps in ambulatory safety for patients treated with immunosuppressive specialty drugs for diverse inflammatory conditions across all relevant treating specialties. More robust safety protocols are urgently needed to prevent serious patient safety events in this high-risk population.
Project description:Safety net health systems face barriers to effective ambulatory medication reconciliation for vulnerable populations. Although some electronic health record (EHR) systems offer safety advantages, EHR use may affect the quality of patient-provider communication.This mixed-methods observational study aimed to develop a conceptual framework of how clinicians balance the demands and risks of EHR and communication tasks during medication reconciliation discussions in a safety net system.This study occurred 3 to 16 (median 9) months after new EHR implementation in five academic public hospital clinics. We video recorded visits between English-/Spanish-speaking patients and their primary/specialty care clinicians. We analyzed the proportion of medications addressed and coded time spent on nonverbal tasks during medication reconciliation as "multitasking EHR use," "silent EHR use," "non-EHR multitasking," and "focused patient-clinician talk." Finally, we analyzed communication patterns to develop a conceptual framework.We examined 35 visits (17%, 6/35 Spanish) between 25 patients (mean age 57, SD 11 years; 44%, 11/25 women; 48%, 12/25 Hispanic; and 20%, 5/25 with limited health literacy) and 25 clinicians (48%, 12/25 primary care). Patients had listed a median of 7 (IQR 5-12) relevant medications, and clinicians addressed a median of 3 (interquartile range [IQR] 1-5) medications. The median duration of medication reconciliation was 2.1 (IQR 1.0-4.2) minutes, comprising a median of 10% (IQR 3%-17%) of visit time. Multitasking EHR use occurred in 47% (IQR 26%-70%) of the medication reconciliation time. Silent EHR use and non-EHR multitasking occurred a smaller proportion of medication reconciliation time, with a median of 0% for both. Focused clinician-patient talk occurred a median of 24% (IQR 0-39%) of medication reconciliation time. Five communication patterns with EHR medication reconciliation were observed: (1) typical EHR multitasking for medication reconciliation, (2) dynamic EHR use to negotiate medication discrepancies, (3) focused patient-clinician talk for medication counseling and addressing patient concerns, (4) responding to patient concerns while maintaining EHR use, and (5) using EHRs to engage patients during medication reconciliation. We developed a conceptual diagram representing the dilemma of the multitasking clinician during medication reconciliation.Safety net visits involve multitasking EHR use during almost half of medication reconciliation time. The multitasking clinician balances the cognitive and emotional demands posed by incoming information from multiple sources, attempts to synthesize and act on this information through EHR and communication tasks, and adopts strategies of silent EHR use and focused patient-clinician talk that may help mitigate the risks of multitasking. Future studies should explore diverse patient perspectives about clinician EHR multitasking, clinical outcomes related to EHR multitasking, and human factors and systems engineering interventions to improve the safety of EHR use during the complex process of medication reconciliation.