GAO: 3 barriers hospitals face when implementing patient safety practices

Many adverse events that occur in healthcare settings are preventable, so why do they persist in healthcare settings across the country? A new report from the Government Accountability Office details some of the challenges providers run into while implementing patient safety practices.

The GAO report is based on data gathered from six hospitals, six insurers and interviews with patient safety experts, CMS and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.

Ultimately, the GAO concluded the three biggest obstacles to implementing patient safety practices are as follows.

1. Gathering actionable data on adverse events. It takes time and resources — two things many hospitals have in short supply — to obtain useful data patient safety issues.

2. Identifying practices that will be effective. There are many practices out there that promise to improve patient safety, but hospitals have to discern which practices are actually based on empirical evidence.

3. Maintaining protocol compliance. Hospitals can implement patient safety protocols, but many face challenges ensuring that hospital staff consistently implement those measures.

To read the full GAO report, click here.



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