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Patient safety program in hospitals: Challenges and opportunities for implementation

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Virtual event on Patient Safety program was organised with an objective to highlight the importance of efficient patient care and promote global actions to enhance patient safety while reducing preventable harm

Voice of Healthcare recently organised a virtual event on Patient Safety program in alliance with Association of Healthcare Providers-India (AHPI) and Wolters Kluwer. The objective of the event was to highlight the importance of efficient patient care and promote global actions to enhance patient safety while reducing preventable harm.

The event was co-moderated by, Dr Ashwini Jogade, Medical Superintendent, Nanavati Max Super Speciality Hospital and Dr Subhrojyoti Bhowmick, Clinical Director at Peerless Hospital & B K Roy Research Centre. The chief guest of the event was Dr David W. Bates, Medical Director of Clinical and Quality Analysis, Information Systems, Mass General Brigham.

The expert panellists in the event were Dr Avinash Supe, Executive Director, Hinduja Hospital; Rajeev Chourey, VP (Operations & Quality), CARE group of hospitals, QCIL and Bobby Ramesh, Group Director Nursing Services, Principal Assessor at NABH. The other attendees from the esteemed panel were Dr Julia Johnson, Associate Director of Clinical Research and Assistant Professor of Paediatrics at The Johns Hopkins Hospital and Dr Girdhar Gyani – Director General – AHPI (India) who was also the inaugural addresser of the session.

Dr Bates said, “Medications deliver a great benefit but also has the potential to become the leading cause of patient harm. Relationship between medication errors, adverse drug events (ADE) and adverse drug reaction (ADR) is interdependent. There are tools now that exist to greatly improve medication safety. It enables us to work on computerized physician order entry, bar – coding, incorporating EMR, computerized monitoring, and post discharge pharmacist contact. This helps in improving the quality care which helps with streamlining and following process, easy access to information and perform quality checks in the background”.

Dr Gyani said, “MMR and IMR are the most important indicators of healthcare status in any country. Hence, patient safety should be the essence of care.  Today we have NABH, which not only focus on the outcome directly but also keeps a close eye on the quality check of the process resulting in minimised medical errors and improved efficiency”.

Dr Johnson highlighted, “Every day there are estimated 5400 stillbirths, 810 maternal deaths and 6700 neonatal deaths that takes place in the US. There is a need for improved focus on patient safety in this department too. We know that safe maternal and new-born care can prevent most of these deaths, for which, we need global action to prevent and reduce avoidable harm. The key aspects to do so are infection prevention and establishing a safety culture while ensuring all the births are done by skilled personnel. I believe a framework of safe, reliable and effective care can help in bringing forward this change supported by cultural revolution and enhanced learning system.”

To conclude, a lot of informed hospitals have CDSS incorporated in place and other hospitals and doctors are in transition for this change. Since the ultimate mantra for patient safety is approaching patient care with the approach of evidence-based medicine. For bringing improved patient outcomes – be it nursing care, patient management, medication or pharmacy, there is no replacement for drug referential tools and digital tools. CDSS tools like UpToDate help existing clinicians and the new medical graduates to get exposed to evidence-based practice approach in streamlining the data efficiently, that has the potential to redefine our healthcare ecosystem at large.

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