Monday, March 11, 2013

AHRQ Patient Safety Strategies

The Agency for Health Research and Quality (AHRQ) released a report titled Making Health Care Safer II: An Updated Critical Analysis of the Evidence for Patient Safety Practices. The report identifies twenty-two strategies containing evidence-based tools and resources that providers can use to improve patient safety and improve quality. Many of the strategies are applicable to long term care and include:

  • Checklists to prevent central line-associated bloodstream infections. 
  • Interventions to reduce urinary catheter use, including catheter reminders, stop orders, or nurse-initiated removal protocols. 
  • Head-of-bed elevation, sedation vacations, oral care with chlorhexidine, and subglottic-suctioning endotracheal tubes to prevent ventilator-associated pneumonia.  
  • CDC  hand hygiene resources. 
  • Multicomponent interventions to reduce pressure ulcers. 
  • Barrier precautions to prevent healthcare-associated infections. 
  • Multicomponent interventions to reduce falls. 
  • Use of clinical pharmacists to reduce adverse drug events. 
  • Documentation of patient preferences for life-sustaining treatment. 
  • Medication reconciliation - Medications at Transitions and Clinical Handoffs. 

The patient safety strategies and tool/resource links can be found on the AHRQ website. Download the report here. For more information, please contact Sandy Fitzler.

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