Study: TeamSTEPPS Reduces Medical Errors

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality's team training program, TeamSTEPPS reduced medical errors and preventable adverse events in a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Researchers examined the incidence of handoff communication errors involving 84 residents and 1255 patients between 2009 and 2010, before and after the implementation of an intervention bundle including standardized communication and handoff training, mnemonic devices and a team handoff structure.

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Medical errors decreased from 33.8 per 100 admissions to 18.3 per 100 admissions, and adverse events decreased from 3.3 per 100 admissions to 1.5 per 100 admissions. In addition, physicians spent more time at the patient bedside after the intervention's implementation.

Researchers concluded the TeamSTEPPS method is an effective way to improve patient care and patient safety without creating significant workflow disruptions.

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