Improving Patient Safety and Incident Reporting Through Use of the Incident Decision Tree
AuthorRasmussen, Erin M.
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractBackground: Preventable medical error accounts for approximately 98,000 deaths in the hospital setting each year. A proposed solution to decreasing medical error encompasses the development of a culture of safety. Safety culture has been defined as a common set of values and beliefs that are shared by individuals within an organization that influence their actions and behaviors. In 2015, the safety culture of Registered Nurses (RN) and Patient Care Technicians (PCT) who regularly worked in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) and Cardiovascular Intensive Care Unit (CVICU) at Flagstaff Medical Center (FMC) was assessed using the Hospital Survey on Patient Safety Culture. This survey functioned as a needs assessment and demonstrated that ICU/CVICU staff had negative reactions to safety culture and error reporting on eight of twelve composites tested. Based off these results, the Incident Decision Tree (IDT) was selected as an intervention to help improve the areas identified in the needs assessment. Purpose: The aims of this quality improvement project included: 1) Development of a protocol for IDT use by ICU/CVICU managers; 2) Implementing the IDT; and 3) Administering a post IDT implementation survey. Methods: The IDT was implemented during a 4-week period in the ICU/CVICU at FMC. During this time, managers used the IDT when processing reported error. Post implementation, an online survey was administered over the course of two weeks to ICU/CVICU managers and unit based RNs and PCTs to reassess their perceptions on the IDT, error reporting, and safety culture. Results: During the implementation period, 23 errors were reported in the ICU/CVICU at FMC with management utilizing the IDT a total of 12 times. Analysis of the reportable data demonstrated that of the 12 incidents, seven were attributed to system failures. The remaining five incidents were processed using the “foresight test.” Conclusions: Results from the post implementation survey demonstrated that ICU/CVICU staff felt the IDT contributed to a non-punitive environment. Staff also reported the IDT helped to increase communication after an error occurred. Lastly, the majority of staff felt the IDT increased transparency in the error reporting process.
Degree ProgramGraduate College