Does Patient Safety Culture Always Mean Safe Hospitals? Nurses Say No

While 85 percent of nurses agree that their hospital has a patient safety culture, only 41 percent describe the hospital they work in as "safe," according to a survey by GE Healthcare and the American Nurses Association.

The GE Healthcare Patient Safety Study, which was led by research firm Edelman Berland, includes responses to an online survey of 900 practicing registered nurses in the U.S., U.K. and China as well as feedback from 14 in-depth interviews with nurses between Oct. 12 and Nov. 4, 2011.


The survey showed a disconnect between nurses' value of patient safety and the level of patient safety at their hospitals. Ninety-four percent of nurses reported that their hospitals have programs in place that promote patient safety. However, only 57 percent of nurses believe the patient safety programs in their hospital are effective. Here are some other key data points from the survey:

•    95 percent of nurses believe it is extremely or very important that hospital leadership make patient safety a priority in creating an effective patient safety culture.
•    90 percent of nurses say a culture where nurses are not penalized for reporting errors or near misses is important.
•    59 percent of respondents agree that nurses often don't report patient errors and 62 percent agree nurses often don't report near misses for fear of punishment.
•    90 percent of nurses see themselves as having the most responsibility for patient safety.

More Articles on Patient Safety:

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