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Patient safety

The latest patient safety related news

Highlighting learning from practitioners and research from human factors in health care.

Follow this theme to discover what patient safety means as a practice. We share learning from practitioners, and researchers and findings from the developing field of human factors in health care.

Patient safety

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality

Toolkit to promote safe surgery

This American toolkit will help perioperative and surgical units in hospitals identify opportunities to improve care and safety practices and implement evidence-based interventions to prevent surgical site infections.

BBC Health

Scottish A&E waits at highest level

The number of people waiting more than four hours in Scotland's accident and emergency units reached record high levels in the last week of the year.

BBC News

NHS in England told to reveal avoidable deaths data

The NHS in England is to become the first healthcare system in the world to publish figures on avoidable patient deaths, the health secretary has said. By the end of 2017, some 170 out of 223 trusts will publish data on deaths they believe could have been prevented.


Hospital culture and clinical performance

A recent systematic review found a consistent association between positive organisational and workplace cultures and beneficial clinical outcomes, including reduced mortality rates across a variety of health settings.


Inpatient bed-spacing and patient mortality

Emergency department (ED) overcrowding results in patient and provider dissatisfaction, poorer quality of care, increased healthcare costs, and even increased mortality in some studies.1–4 In response to this evidence, many hospitals have instituted full capacity protocols in which patients in the ED who are admitted but waiting for a bed on the home ward of the admitting service are sent to the first available inpatient bed (or even inpatient hallway) even if it is off-service—a practice known in the UK as boarding or medical outliers, and in other countries as bed-spacing.


Task errors by emergency physicians are associated with interruptions, multitasking, fatigue and working memory capacity

This study aimed to assess the relative contributions of interruptions and multitasking by emergency physicians to prescribing errors.

BMC Health Services Research

Patient safety culture in care homes for older people

Culture is critical to the success of any organisation. Some settings may prove more challenging. This paper reports on scoping review that sought to assess the status of safety culture and improvement in residential aged.

Implementation Science

Safety analysis over time: seven major changes to adverse event investigation

The systematic analysis of incidents has greatly expanded our understanding of both the causes and prevention of harm. These methods have been widely employed in healthcare over the last 20 years but are now subject to critique and reassessment. This paper reconsiders the purpose and value of incident analysis and methods appropriate to the healthcare of today.

Health Foundation

Funding cuts and excess mortality in England – blog post

Research into the impact of austerity in health and social care on mortality has been the subject of much attention and discussion. While it’s instinctive to link austerity with poorer health outcomes, especially for more vulnerable people, does the latest research establish a clear causal relationship?

NHS Confederation

Numbers of people attending A&E in Wales are up

The latest NHS activity and performance statistics show the highest number of people going to an accident and emergency department per day in any November since statistics were first published in 2006.

NHS National Institute for Health Research

A strategy of 'delayed antibiotic prescribing' for respiratory infections may reduce antibiotic use

Delaying antibiotic prescribing made little difference to most symptoms of respiratory infection. It reduced antibiotic use and did not affect patient satisfaction compared with immediate prescribing of antibiotics.

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