5 Tips for Measuring Patient Safety Data

Patient safety data is becoming more crucial to hospitals and health systems as reimbursement patterns are transitioning to value-based performance models.

To ensure accurate data, here are five tips for measuring patient safety data, as presented by LifeWings, a patient safety consulting firm.

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1. Make sure you have a measurement plan. Healthcare workers can't initiate improvements if there is no plan identifying a needed change.

2. Share the measurement plan with staff. The hospital staff needs to know what areas need to be improved. "If they don't know the goal, it's impossible for them to adjust their daily work to reach the goal," said LifeWings CEO Steve Harden in the news release.

3. Keep measurement goals narrow and focused. Instead of having a laundry list of areas the hospital can improve, choose a handful that everybody can rally behind to effect greater, more efficient change.

4. Select key result goals. LifeWings asks hospitals the following question to arrive at a key result: "If every other aspect of your operations held constant, what one thing, if significantly improved, would provide the greatest safety benefit to your patients?" Answering that question identifies patient safety priorities, and all efforts can be geared toward achieving that goal.

5. Differentiate outcome results vs. behavior results. Outcome results sit on a higher level than behavior results because they refer to measurable data change instead of a change in action. Keeping staff focused on outcome results instead of behavior results can increase the chances of widespread success.

More Articles on Patient Safety Measurements:

Performance Measurement Improves Patient Engagement, Safety
9 Stories on Quality Benchmarking and Reporting
Are Patients Missing the Most Valuable Quality Data?

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