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Day: April 6, 2007

More on Monitoring Unmonitored Patients

After reading a previous blog post, Susan Carr, editor for Patient Safety and Quality Healthcare magazine, asked me to write a feature article on monitoring unmonitored patients. The story will focus on increased patient monitoring to reduce adverse events. I'm shooting for a feature length story, but I need your help. I've got plenty of references from the literature, but if you know someone who has a pre publication paper that I could quote, let me know. I'm also looking for folks to interview. So if you have a point of view on patient safety related adverse events, and how increased (or improved) patient monitoring could help, give me a call. You can read about my previous article for PSQH on patient alarms...

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Hospital Patient Safety Declines in Latest Study

According to this story in Modern Healthcare, HealthGrades has released their Fourth Annual Patient Safety in American Hospitals Study (pdf press release), and the news is not all good: But comparing the rates of reported PSIs [that's the AHRQs Patient Safety Indicators] for 2003 and 2005, figures supplied to Modern Healthcare but not included in the study report, is not encouraging from a global public health perspective. According to the analysis by HealthGrades, the overall PSI rate for all Medicare patients in 2003 was 2.7947%. By 2005, it was 3.0199%. That's an increase of nearly 8.1%. In addition, incident rates for 10 of the 16 specific PSIs worsened from 2003 to 2005, and those 10 that worsened were on average 11.5% worse, the report said. Just three types of incidents accounted for nearly 72% of all reported PSIs, with “failure to rescue” leading with an incident rate of 134 per 1,000 “at-risk hospitalizations.” Data was available on changes in these specific metrics between 2003 and 2005, with failure to rescue rates dropping (improving) nearly 6%, or eight fewer deaths per 1,000. The other two most common PSIs were decubitus ulcer, 32 per 1,000 at-risk hospitalizations, which increased (worsened) by 18%; and post-operative respiratory failure, 15 per 1,000, which increased (worsened) by 9%. The news isn't all bad, but progress is slow. Major improvements will necessitate greater changes in care...

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