Best Practices for Administering Patient Safety Goals

Best practices for administering patient safety goals

National patient safety goals were developed by the Joint Commission to ensure that accredited healthcare institutions are providing patients with the best care possible. The potential for errors in healthcare is high. Add more than two years of a global pandemic and the fact that a third of all nursing professionals are considering leaving the industry entirely, and the strain on our healthcare systems further increases the potential for errors. With organizations struggling with staffing levels and nurse retention, providing the best patient care possible becomes harder to manage and can compromise patient safety as well.

The Joint Commission developed annual patient safety goals across facility types in order to help organizations re-center patient safety in their care, and avoid preventable harm. For the best practices in this article, we’ll be focusing on Nursing Care Center goals, however you can also find patient safety goals for ambulatory health, assisted living communities, behavioral health care and human services, critical access hospital, home care, hospital, laboratory services, and office-based surgeries.

What are the Nursing Care Center: 2022 National Patient Safety Goals?

All of the national patient safety goals have one main purpose: to reduce preventable harm. You can find more specific guidelines for each type of facility or care, but in all cases you’ll find ways to provide better care for patients.

Here is a brief overview of the patient safety goals for Nursing Care Centers:

  • Identify residents correctly: Ensure medicine and treatment is provided to the correct patient.
  • Use medicines safely: Take extra care when a patient uses blood thinners, and record and pass along proper information about medication.
  • Prevent infection: Set, improve, and reinforce hand cleaning procedures.
  • Prevent residents from falling: Know which patients are prone to falling, especially if they take medication that makes them dizzy or light-headed, and take additional action.
  • Prevent bed sores: Find out which patients are prone to bed-sores and re-check often that they are not occurring.

Implementing National Patient Safety Goals

In support of patient safety, and in alignment with national patient safety goals, IntelyCare works to make sure these patient safety goals are at the forefront of everything that we do. Our work centers on reviewing client concerns, identifying opportunities for improvement, determining root causes, and implementing effective training and/or actionable next steps.

The first step in the investigation is a phone call to the facility that submitted the request. We understand that Directors of Nursing or Facility Managers may be extremely busy, however, the phone call is an important first step in the process of getting quality issues resolved. It allows us to obtain more information that we can share with our internal team and that we can use to help correct the behavior or practice of the nursing professional (i.e. IntelyPro) in question.

Once we have received necessary information from the facility, our Quality Assurance Team will contact the IntelyPro directly to work with them. Our team understands safe practice, and we believe that by providing the IntelyPro with the opportunity to expand their skills and elevate their practice, we create professionals who provide a higher quality of care and have greater job satisfaction. This leads to better client satisfaction and, most importantly, improved health outcomes for patients.

Safety Goals in Practice

Recently, a member of our Quality Assurance team was able to quickly and efficiently resolve a misunderstanding with a nurse working at a facility involving a clinical incident that they didn’t know they needed to report. Without the support of our Quality Assurance team, this nurse may have not realized their error. Their lack of knowledge on how to handle this particular clinical incident could come up again, and could put future patients at risk. Instead we were able to connect quickly with the IntelyPro and walk them through the scenarios and implications of not following up and reporting clinical incidents in a timely manner, including the potential harm to the patient. The IntelyPro was very receptive and appreciative of the education. The facility was impressed with the outcomes and glad to keep the nurse on staff.

Patient Safety is the First Step to a Healthy Facility

Patient safety has to be at the core of everything in healthcare. Fortunately, elevating this practice means improving all areas of healthcare. By following strict quality assurance guidelines and investing in nurses, organizations can see improvement to their retention strategy, and decreases in their turnover and the costs that come with it. With a nurse staffing shortage looming, these practices go a long way towards keeping more nurses on staff and improving the business on a whole. Greater customer satisfaction, increased bookings, and a reduction in cancellations means more revenue.

If you’re interested in working with IntelyCare, talk to us!

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