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Found 39 results
  1. Content Article
    Hospitals are complex adaptive systems. They are industrial environments where it isn't always possible to expect predictable responses to inputs. Patient safety management practices need to adapt to align with the environment in which events occur. It is time to reimagine safety event reporting and management solutions that guide, not prescribe, investigations and improvement actions.
  2. Content Article
    This blog calls for action on the careful review of established pain medication when a patient is admitted to hospital. Richard describes the experience of two elderly patients who suffered pain due to their long term medication being stopped when they were admitted to hospital. Pain control needs must not be ignored or undermined, there needs to be carer and patient involvement and their consent, and alternative pain control must be considered.
  3. Content Article
    In 2008, five ‘serious untoward incidents’ occurred on a small maternity unit in a hospital in the UK. The prevailing view, held by clinical staff, hospital managers, and executives, was that these events were unconnected and did not signal systemic failures in care. This view was maintained by the testimony of staff and governance procedures which prevented the incidents from being considered together. Drawing on the inquiry report of the Morecambe Bay Investigation (2015), Dawn Goodwin examines how the prevailing view was built and dismantled, eventually being replaced with a very different description of events. Overturning this view required affected parents to engage with governing bodies and legal processes, challenge clinical staff, lobby for inquests, and mobilise social media and the national press. Tracing how different descriptions of events weaken or gather force as they travel through different forums, processes, and are presented to different audiences, she explores the sociology of knowledge around establishing failures of care.
  4. Community Post
    NHS hospital staff spend countless hours capturing data in electronic prescribing and medicines administration systems. Yet that data remains difficult to access and use to support patient care. This is a tremendous opportunity to improve patient safety, drive efficiencies and save time for frontline staff. I have just published a post about this challenge and Triscribe's solution. I would love to hear any comments or feedback on the topic... How could we use this information better? What are hospitals already doing? Where are the gaps? Thanks
  5. Content Article
    The Regional Patient Safety Observatory of the Community of Madrid is an initiative aimed at increasing the quality of healthcare and the safety of professionals and patients in the healthcare environment. The Observatory is a consultative and advisory body of the Ministry of Health in matters of health risks and is functional in nature.  Its objectives are: Promote and spread the culture of health risk management in the Community of Madrid. Obtain, analyse and disseminate regular and systematic information on health risks. Propose measures to prevent, eliminate or reduce health risks. It hosts the Patient Safety Brief Library, a tool for disseminating scientific knowledge developed by a group of experts within the framework of the Patient Safety Strategy 2027 of the Ministry of Health.
  6. News Article
    More than three years into the Covid pandemic, there are a host of important unanswered questions about Long Covid, which significantly limit healthcare providers’ ability to treat patients with the condition, according to US physicians and scientists. That vacuum of information remains as much of the US has moved on from the pandemic, while Covid long-haulers continue to face stigma and questions over whether their symptoms are real, providers say. “We don’t quite have our finger on the pulse of what’s wrong, what biologically is causing it, and that’s a big problem,” said Dr Marc Sala, co-director of the Northwestern Medicine Comprehensive Covid-19 Center. “It’s hard to direct drugs or treatments without having the biological underpinnings for why someone is feeling so fatigued with exercise.” In addition to the ambiguity around the root causes of Long Covid, there are also challenges in research because of how Covid can produce so many different symptoms. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention list includes fatigue, respiratory issues and difficulty thinking or concentrating but also states that “post-Covid conditions may not affect everyone the same way”. “Everyone has a different constellation of symptoms,” said Dr Steven Deeks, an infectious disease specialist at the University of California, San Francisco. “Some people get better over time, some people wax and wane, some people get worse,” and so it is difficult for researchers to determine when a study should end and compare a drug versus a placebo. Read full story Source: The Guardian, 6 March 2023
  7. News Article
    Following the Advanced cyber attack in August 2022, Phil Huggins has revealed to a Digital Health Rewired audience that the NHS has “seen no clinical impact or significant clinical harm”, after a review to be released in the near future. The national chief information security officer for health and care at NHS England was speaking alongside a panel on the Cyber Security Stage on day two of Digital Health Rewired 2023 in London. Huggins explained that although the impact of the Advanced attack was big on the system, in a clinical sense it was not particularly damaging, despite the fact that client data was confirmed to have been exfiltrated. However, Ayesha Rahim, clinical lead for digital mental health at NHS England and chief medical information officer at Surrey and Borders Partnership Foundation Trust, was also on the panel, and spoke of the huge impact the attack had on staff. “The date 4th August is imprinted in my brain”, Rahim said, which is when the attack first happened and was first reported. She explained that it is “quite difficult to fully convey the chaos this caused”, giving examples of staff having no idea what a patient’s background was and therefore having to do everything “blindfolded”. Rahim said staff could not tell if it was safe to go out on visits to mental health patients due to the lack of data and information on them, and every time a person saw a staff member they were retraumatised having to explain their past over and over, including experiences of sexual abuse. Read full story Source: Digital Health, 15 March 2023
  8. Content Article
    In a blog for National Voices, the leading coalition of health and social care charities in England, Patient Safety Learning’s Chief Executive Helen Hughes discusses an independent report written by risk expert Tim Edwards that highlights serious and widespread safety concerns around the misdiagnosis of pulmonary embolism.
  9. Content Article
    Jenny Edwards died in February 2022 from pulmonary embolism, following misdiagnosis. In this blog, her son Tim introduces us to Jenny, illustrating the deep loss felt following her premature passing. He talks about the care she received and argues that there were multiple points at which pulmonary embolism should have been suspected. Tim found the investigation that followed Jenny’s death to be lacking in objectivity and assurance that any learning could be taken forward. He has since produced an independent report, drawing on existing data, freedom of information requests and his mother’s case, to highlight broader safety issues.
  10. Content Article
    Pulmonary embolism is the third most common cause of cardiovascular death worldwide after stroke and heart attack. Although life-threatening, when diagnosed promptly survival rates are good.  This report, authored by risk expert Tim Edwards and published by Patient Safety Learning, highlights serious and widespread patient safety concerns relating to the misdiagnosis of pulmonary embolisms.  Drawing on existing data, freedom of information requests and his mother’s case, he outlines nine calls for action to improve pulmonary embolism care. 
  11. Content Article
    The NHS Knowledge and Library Hub connects NHS staff and learners to high quality knowledge and evidence resources in one place, using a single search.  includes all journal articles, e-books, guidelines and evidence summary tools provided nationally and by your local NHS library team provides seamless access to full text, as an immediate download or on request from an NHS library avoids the less-reliable sources you might find in a general web search. Full access is free to all NHS staff and learners using your NHS OpenAthens account. 
  12. Content Article
    EasyFOI is an email address compiler designed to help you send identical freedom of information requests to multiple organisations. Journalists, researchers and ordinary members of the public use the FOI act every day to request all kinds of information from statutory public bodies. You may want to request the same information from different organisations. But it can be hard to find a central list of every public body in the country, let alone their FOI inboxes (which don't tend to follow a standard format). EasyFOI is here to make that easier. Instead of searching for each organisation's contact details, or compiling your own database, you can use this simple tool to copy the appropriate email address for every relevant organisation straight into your device's clipboard. You can also use the EasyFOI generator to help you write your request in seconds. The EasyFOI database doesn't yet cover all public bodies. But it's expanding all the time, and currently includes more than 1,000 organisations.
  13. Content Article
    The ‘improvement’ of healthcare is now established and growing as a field of research and practice. This article by Cribb et al., based on qualitative data from interviews with 21 senior leaders in this field, analyses the growth of improvement expertise as not simply an expansion but also a multiplication of ‘ways of knowing’. It illustrates how healthcare improvement is an area where contests about relevant kinds of knowledge, approaches and purposes proliferate and intersect. One dimension of this story relates to the increasing relevance of sociological expertise—both as a disciplinary contributor to this arena of research and practice and as a spur to reflexive critique. The analysis highlights the threat of persistent hierarchies within improvement expertise reproducing and amplifying restricted conceptions of both improvement and ‘better’ healthcare.
  14. News Article
    One in five deaths around the world is caused by sepsis, also known as blood poisoning, shows the most comprehensive analysis of the condition. The report estimates 11 million people a year are dying from sepsis - more than are killed by cancer. The researchers at the University of Washington said the "alarming" figures were double previous estimates. Most cases were in poor and middle income countries, but even wealthier nations are dealing with sepsis. There has been a big push within the health service to identify the signs of sepsis more quickly and to begin treatment. The challenge is to get better at identifying patients with sepsis in order to treat them before it is too late. Early treatment with antibiotics or anti-virals to clear an infection can make a massive difference. Prof Mohsen Naghavi said: "We are alarmed to find sepsis deaths are much higher than previously estimated, especially as the condition is both preventable and treatable. We need renewed focus on sepsis prevention among newborns and on tackling antimicrobial resistance, an important driver of the condition." Read full story Source: BBC News, 17 January 2020
  15. Content Article
    This book interrogates the assumption that evidence means the same thing to different constituencies and in different contexts by outlining a more nuanced and socially responsive approach to medical expertise that incorporates scientific and lay processes of making sense of the world and deciding how to act in it. In so doing, it provides a point of orientation for clinicians working at the coalface, whose experience is sometimes at odds with the type of rationality that underpins evidence-based medicine and that guides researchers conducting randomised controlled trials. The argument elaborated also has implications for policy makers in the healthcare system, who have to navigate similar pressures and contradictions between scientific and lay rationality to produce meaningful guidelines in the midst of a runaway pandemic. Debates within and beyond the medical establishment on the efficacy of measures such as mandatory face masks and lockdowns are examined in detail, as are various degrees of hesitancy towards vaccines and other pharmaceutical interventions. The authors demonstrate that it is ultimately through narratives that knowledge about medical and other phenomena is communicated to others, enters the public space, and provokes discussion and disagreements. Importantly, effective narratives can enhance the reception of that knowledge and reduce some of the sources of resistance and misunderstanding that continue to plague public communication about important medical issues such as pandemics. Access the introduction and excerpts from each chapter from the link below.
  16. Content Article
    In my tweets and posts I have suggested that patients themselves need to take more responsibility for the medicines they are prescribed. But what about vulnerable groups who may depend on decisions being made for them, and in their best interests? Whilst there are circumstances where antipsychotic (psychotropic) medicines are an appropriate option for people with autism and learning disabilities, these occasions are limited. In all cases the patient matters most, and any decision to prescribe must be part of a team based, patient-led decision, which is regularly reviewed.
  17. Content Article
    In this blog, a patient who experienced life-changing surgical complications describes the process of reconciliation between medical staff and patients when harm has occurred in healthcare. She highlights the need for both the patient and healthcare professional to be engaged and open in the process. She also looks at how different human factors can negatively impact on the duty of candour process, and why they need to be acknowledged. These factors include lack of communication, distraction, lack of resources, stress, complacency, lack of teamwork, pressure, lack of awareness, lack of knowledge, fatigue, lack of assertiveness and norms.
  18. Event
    until
    Health First Europe and the members of the European Patient Group on Antimicrobial Resistance are glad to invite you to our Parliament Roundtable Debate entitled “Engaging with patients and closing knowledge gaps to fight antimicrobial resistance: the role in infection prevention and antimicrobial stewardship.” The event will take place in a hybrid format on Thursday 27 October, 10:00-11:30 CEST (9:00-10:30 BST), kindly hosted by MEP Ondřej Knotek (Renew Europe, Czech Republic), and under the patronage of the Czech Presidency of the Council. Join us to learn more about how AMR affects patients across Europe and how everyone can take action to prevent the development of resistant bacteria. Please register as soon as possible to secure a spot in the European Parliament or to join the conference remotely! We hope you’re able to join us. Register for the event
  19. Community Post
    We should all strive to keep antibiotics working for our NHS surgeons and future generations, by decreasing antibiotic use in medicine. It is mums themselves who could dramatically decrease antibiotic use, in the only medical specialty where this is possible - in obstetrics - by keeping skin intact; by being informed of the 10cm diameter that 'Aniball' and 'Epi-no Delphine Plus' birth facilitating devices, the mechanical version of Antenatal Perineal Massage, achieve by skin expansion (much like by 'earlobe skin expanders') prior to birth, for back of baby's head. This enables a normal birth for many more babies by shortening birth, with no cutting (episiotomies) or tearing, and much fewer Caesarean sections, as each Caesarean section requires antibiotics to be injected into mum, to kill any bacteria, which might have invaded a skin cell, from being implanted with that skin cell, deep into the wall of the uterus, by the surgeon's knife. There are around 750,000 births in the UK alone and three-quarters of mums are damaged during birth and at risk of developing infection; so a dramatic decrease in antibiotic use is possible. Empowering mums with knowledge; that both the skin and the coats of the pelvic floor muscles, which form the floor of the lower tummy, can be stretched painlessly, in preparation of birth, from the 26th week of pregnancy, so a gentler, kinder birth for both baby and mum becomes possible by decreasing risky obstetric interventions. Muscle can be stretched to 3 times its original length, if stretched painlessly over 6 or more occasions, and still retains its ability to recoil back, contracting to its original length. So there is no damage to mum. Baby's delicate head is not used to achieve this 'birth canal widening', because Antenatal Perineal Massage or Aniball or Epi-no Delphine Plus have already achieved this prior to the start of birth. In birth this stretching is rushed within the last 2 hours of birth, with risk of avulsion of pelvic floor muscle fibres from the pubic bone and risk of skin tearing or the need for episiotomy. The overlying skin will likewise stretch without tearing if done over 6 or more occasions. The maximal opening in the outlet or lower part of the pelvis is 10cm diameter, so 10cm diameter is the goal of the birth aiding devices and 'Antenatal Perineal Massage' or 'Birth Canal Widening' - opening doors for baby maximally. The mother reviews on 'Aniball' and 'Epi-no Delphine Plus' are impressive: Wanda Klaman, a first time mum, gives birth at nearly 42 weeks to a 4.4kg baby, with no need for episiotomy or forceps; Sophie of London, avoids episiotomy, when forceps are used to aid delivery for her baby who lays across her tummy - transverse lay, because the skin at this opening is so stretchy thanks to the birth facilitating devices. Cochrane Collaborate Report on Antenatal Massage https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23633325/ https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7450045/Fears-infections-pandemic-grow-NINETEEN-new-superbugs-discovered-UK.html https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/mistakes-maternity-wards-setting-nhs-22702909
  20. Content Article
    This study in the Journal of Patient Safety and Risk Management aimed to assess the patient safety situation in Ghana across the World Health Organization's (WHO’s) 12 action areas of patient safety. The authors used interviews and observation including a WHO adapted questionnaire across 16 selected hospitals, including two teaching hospitals selected from the northern and southern parts of the Ghana. The key strength identified in the patient safety situational analysis was knowledge and learning in patient safety, while patient safety surveillance was the weakest action area identified. There were also weaknesses in areas such as national patient policy, healthcare associated infections, surgical safety, patient safety partnerships and patient safety funding.
  21. Content Article
    The inpatient diabetes team at University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust recently launched D1abasics, an initiative that aims to improve inpatient care for people with diabetes. In this blog, Diabetes Consultant Mayank Patel and Inpatient Diabetes Specialist Nurse Paula Johnston outline the approach and explain how it will equip staff across all specialties with the basic knowledge to care safely for people with diabetes in hospital.
  22. Content Article
    People with diabetes account for one in three hospital inpatients, and this is projected to increase to one in five in the next few years. Often, people are in hospital for reasons other than their diabetes, so it is important that staff across all specialties understand the basics of diabetes care in order to ensure patient safety. D1abasics is an innovative project that aims to equip all healthcare professionals to support the basic diabetes healthcare needs of their patients. Developed by the diabetes team at University Hospital Southampton with funding and support from the charity Diabetes UK, the campaign includes resources such as posters, lanyards and prompt cards. The diabetes team is supporting learning across the hospital by making visits to all wards and specialties to promote D1abasics. You can download the D1abasics poster below.
  23. Content Article
    Peter Lachman explains why safety must be embedded into what we do every day, not what we do only after harm has occurred, and why we need to constantly ask ourselves “what do we need to do to be safe?” His new book, Oxford University Press Handbook of Patient Safety, translates the complex patient safety theories into actions that frontline staff can take to be safe. 
  24. Content Article
    The purpose of this investigation by the Healthcare Safety Investigation Branch (HSIB) was to consider the management and care of preterm labour and birth of twins. Preterm birth—defined as babies born alive before the completion of 37 weeks of pregnancy—is one of the main causes of death, long-term conditions and disability in under-fives worldwide, and 60% of twin pregnancies result in premature birth. The reference event for this investigation was the case of Sarah, who was pregnant with twins and was overseen by an obstetrician during her pregnancy. Sarah was assessed as having a higher-risk pregnancy as she had had previous medical intervention on her cervix and was pregnant with twins. Shortly after having been discharged from a hospital with a specialist neonatal unit following suspected early labour, she went to her local maternity unit at 29+2 weeks with further episodes of abdominal tightening. Her labour did not progress as expected and a caesarean section was required to deliver the babies at 29+6 weeks. The twin girls were born well, but 23 days after their birth a scan revealed brain injury in both babies. The investigation identified several findings to explain the experience of the mother in the reference event, including the lack of scientific evidence or specific guidelines and the uncertainty associated with the clinical decision making in this scenario. This highlighted the need for further research into preterm labour as a recognised risk factor for twin pregnancies. As part of the investigation, HSIB identified that since 2019 a large volume of national work and research in the area of twin pregnancy and preterm birth has been undertaken. The investigation report sets out the work currently in progress and seeks to understand if it will address gaps in knowledge.
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