Quality and Safety in Healthcare
Patient safety is an important part of our health care system, it helps define a quality health care culture. Health care is not as safe as it should be. A culture of safety requires the commitment of leadership to positively impact outcomes.
Medical error is a complex issue, but error itself is an inevitable part of being human. Learning from error can occur at both an individual and an organizational level through incident reporting and analysis.
The US Institute of Medicine estimate that as many as 98,000 people die in any given year from medical errors that occur in hospitals (Kohn LT, 2000).
Within the healthcare system in Ireland we strive to continually improve the quality and safety of care provided to patients on an on-going basis against the requirements outlined in Health Act 2007 and The Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) National Standards. In our organisation we also implement the standards set out by Joint Commission International (JCI).
HIQA is an independent authority established to drive high-quality and safe care for people using our health and social care services in Ireland. HIQA’s role is to develop standards, inspect and review health and social care services and support informed decisions on how services are delivered.
The Health Act 2007 provides the legislative basis for the monitoring, inspection and registration of residential services.
The mission of Joint Commission International (JCI) is to improve the safety and quality of care in the international community through the provision of education, publications, consultation, and evaluation services.
Despite a professionally trained and highly motivated workforce in the health system, as well as huge investment in healthcare services over recent years in particular, the Irish healthcare system does not yet appear to have the framework in place to lessen the likelihood of errors occurring, the means by which to respond quickly or effectively to errors by analysing them and disseminating learning, nor sufficient regulation in place to ensure as far as possible that patients receive the highest possible quality of care throughout their journey through the health system. (Patient Safety and Quality, 2008)
Patient Safety has become imperative in recent years, with increased emphasis across the world on patient safety in policy reform, legislative changes and development of standards of care driven by quality improvement initiatives.
It is essential in any healthcare system that healthcare professiona...