Patient Safety & Clinical Quality


Becker's Top 10 Patient Safety Issues for 2016 - do any of these resonate with you?

 patient safety infographic

Becker's Hospital Review's Infection Control & Clinical Quality team compiled a list of the top ten patient safety issues based on trends from 2015. The article not only lists health care issues, but also proactive ideas for continuing the fight towards improvement. 

Top 10 patient safety issues infographic

#10. Medication Errors

"Medication errors are 'one of the most common types of inpatient errors.' They about during surgery as well."

Did you know:

  • That 5% of hospital patients are affected my medication errors annually
  • Up to 50% of medication errors are during surgeries

Improvement Opportunities:

  • Accuracy in labeling
  • Correct dosages
  • Treating a problem found by vital signs
  • Less documentation errors


#9. Diagnostic Errors

Institute of Medicine reported on this last year in Improving Diagnosis in Health Care.

Did you know:

  • That diagnostic errors cause of 6-17% of hospital adverse events
  • Diagnostic errors account for 10% of patient deaths

Improvement Opportunities:

  • Partner with patients & their families
  • Teamwork between healthcare providers


#8. Discharge Practices

Financial incentives are being put into place to force hospital to focus on patient safety issues.

Did you know:

  • 20% of post-discharge patients experience an adverse event within 3 weeks

Improvement Opportunities:

  • CCJR offering financial incentives for:
    • Responsibility of quality of care
    • Cost of joint replacement patients for 90 day post-discharge


#7. Workplace Safety

"OSHA launched a webpage providing information and strategies for healthcare workplace violence awareness and prevention."

Did you know:

  • Safer staff can equal safer patients

Improvement Opportunities:


#6. Facility Safety

"Hospitals may wish to consider re-evaluating the maintenance protocols for their facilities to ensure patient safety."

Did you know:

  • Legionnares disease is linked to poor ventilation
  • 2015 saw serious patient health issues due to building issues: sewage lead and live rates

Improvement Opportunities:

  • Currently being created: uniform guidelines for HVAC in sterile departments
  • Evaluation of maintenance protocols

#5. Reprocessing Issues

The spread of infection due to inadequate cleaning practices associated with flexible scopes has been on the rise.

Did you know:

  • Medical scopes tied to infections are on the Top 10 Health Technology Hazards list

Improvement Opportunities:

  • Improve best practices for scope disinfection:
    • Using the correct tools
    • Following protocol
    • Culturing to check for bacteria


#4. Sepsis

One million people a year will develop sepsis, half of which will die. This number continues to rise.

Did you know:

  • 1 Million+ cases annually
  • Half of which die

Improvement Opportunities:

  • CMS has added sepsis management bundle to the 2016 Inpatient Prospective Payment System Final Rule


#3. "Super" Superbugs

Defined as "bacteria that cannot be treated using two or more antibiotics;" and "appear to be getting stronger."

Did you know:

  • Superbugs are reported to appear to be getting stronger
  • CMS reports a set of a certain strain - CRE is a cause for public health concern

Improvement Opportunities:

  • Increase awareness on antibiotic stewardship


#2. Cyber Insecurity

Actual cases of medical devices being remotely hacked have been reported bringing harm to patients.

Did you know:

  • In 2016 the FDA officially warned against the use of the Hospira Symbiq infusion system - an electronic pump susceptible to hacking

Improvement Opportunities:

  • Increasing security of devices by the healthcare industry, manufacturers and the federal government


#1. Quality Data Transparency

"Physicians will develop a greater sense of accountability to deliver quality care." Ashish K Jha, MD

Did you know:

  • Some hospitals internally display employee performance ratings

Improvement Opportunities:

  • Displaying your data will increase accountability, incentivize staff, and encourage healthy competition.


Do any of these issues resonate with you?

Most of you are probably already aware of these patient safety issues. With more information and data analysis, we are able to increase our awareness and resources to ensure even better safety for our patients in 2016.

Readiness Rounds, as indicated above, encompasses many of the solutions needed to address and assist in solving these patient safety issues. Be sure to visit our samples checklist page and our resources page.

Feel free to contact us to discuss your patient safety concerns.


  Learn More: The Checklist Vs Hospital Tracers FREE eBook

Checklists vs. Tracers ebook 


Barnet, Shannon. "10 Top Patient Safety Issues for 2016." Becker's Hospital Review. N.p., 12 Jan. 2016. Web. 21 May 2016.

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