The Quality of Healthcare Assignment

Improving Quality of Patient Care to Reduce Patient Falls and Eliminate Medication Errors

A healthcare organization has a need to improve its patient safety levels that are negatively affected by patient falls that happen almost every month, as well as, medication errors. The model that the hospital has been using to address the two issues is investigating and reporting incidents for mitigation purposes. However, the solutions that have been developed, which include improving the hospital environment to be safer for patients and using teamwork to address medication errors have been limited by nursing shortages and the high costs of improving the environment. The hospital has also been using a barcode system to scan patients in order to track their medications. The system has been of use to reduce over 95 percent of the errors but there is a need to have a better system to ensure medication errors are completely eliminated (Tso, 2017). The purpose of this assignment is to identify a new model of delivering nursing care to reduce costs and improve the quality outcomes for the hospital with the help of the analysis conducted to understand the causes of the two issues.

New Nursing Care Delivery Model and Patient Safety Goals

Patient safety goals- Reduce or eliminate patient falls and medication errors (using EPIC and checking patient identifiers)

The cost of healthcare tends to be high because of the continued poor quality of care being given to many patients. Besides, inefficiency is affecting the quality of patient care and some of them are medical errors and conditions around the hospital. The issues need strategic solutions that can be developed using reliable and valid data. To obtain that data, efforts such as investigating events that have occurred to determine their causes are necessary (Hjort, 2018).  In the prevention of falls, the need to work with such data is to reduce the chances of patient falls as much as possible even though it is not easy to prevent them from happening completely. That means that the data gathered can be analyzed statistically to show at what rates the falls are reducing. Some solutions that have been mentioned to help healthcare organizations reduce patient falls is having suitable technological aids such as having controlled wheelchairs, improving the processes of providing care, and is focused more on the patients to be alert for any call for assistance (Butcher, 2013). Unlike patient falls, medical errors are a serious threat to the safety of patients and they must be eliminated as argued by Rodziewics & Hipskind (2018). One of the solutions a hospital can borrow to prevent medication errors is to cultivate a culture of patient safety by identifying possible challenges and finding the best ways to manage them. In addition, to prevent medication errors requires teamwork to ensure medications are done in a safer manner. Johnson III (2016) informs that it has become a legal requirement for all healthcare institutions to make use of electronic systems to manage healthcare records. Such systems include EPIC that is increasingly becoming the most preferred. The EPIC system is described as one that monitors and tracks the care given to each patient. The data that the system provides is able to help healthcare providers to make informed decisions on how care should be continued. The data collected also shows any complications that a patient has developed in response to the treatment given to prevent such occurrences in the future. Thus, the EPIC system is educational to both the patient and the caregiver. M2SYS (2012) conveys that the EPIC system works together with a patient identifier that helps in preventing duplication of patient care records and improve patient data to exceed the objectives of patient safety. A hospital can choose to identify patients using their fingerprints, facial or voice identification among others. Even though the costs of implementing such electronic systems can be high, they are not comparable to the increased costs caused by continued poor patient care. Thus, the investment is worth it.

Key Concepts

The key concepts for the new nursing care delivery model follow the framework that Santana et al. (2018) discuss. That means the hospital has to adopt a culture that promotes patient safety, improve the hospital environment to ensure that it is supportive to patients as much as possible, and take advantage of advancing electronic systems tailored for the healthcare industry. The outcomes of the new model according to the person-centered nursing leadership framework by McCormack and McCance (2017) will include empowering healthcare workers to ensure patient safety, especially when it comes to managing medications. In addition, the model will also be enabling patients to experience a better patient care that exceeds their expectations.

Conclusion

Comparing what the hospital is currently using to the new model it should adapt to, it is seen that the hospital is not badly off at managing medication errors and patient falls. However, it needs to invest more to have better equipment to save it from the challenges the workers deal with in ensuring patient safety. In place of the barcodes, the hospital can use the EPIC system, which has added advantages such as monitoring how patients are responding to treatment and tracking their medications. The patient identifiers are also helpful in avoiding duplication of records. In regards to addressing patient falls, the use of data to determine the rate at which the falls are being reduced with any improvements made within the hospital environment will motivate the hospital to achieve perfection with time.

References

Butcher, L. (2013). The no-fall zone. Retrieved from https://www.hhnmag.com/articles/6404-Hospitals-work-to-prevent-patient-falls.

Hjort, B. (2018). HIM functions in healthcare quality and patient safety. Retrieved from http://library.ahima.org/doc?oid=104841.

Johnson III, R. J. (2016). A comprehensive review of an electronic health record system soon to assume market ascendancy EPICAA. Journal of Healthcare Communications, 1(4). Doi: 10.4172/2472-1654.100036.

M2SYS (2012). RightPatient biometric patient identification for EpicCare EMR systems to improve patient safety. Retrieved from http://www.m2sys.com/healthcare/rightpatient-biometric-patient-identification-epiccare-emr-systems-improve-patient-safety/.

Rodziewics, T. L. & Hipskind, J. E. (2018). Medical error prevention. Statpearls. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29763131.

Santana, M. J., Manalili, K., Jolley, R. J., Zelinsky, S., Quan, H. & Lu, M. (2018). How to practice person-centered care: A conceptual framework. Health Expectations, 21(2), 429-440.

Tso, V. (2017). Increasing patient safety during medication administration. Retrieved from https://repository.usfca.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1709&context=capstone.

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