How Patient Safety Measures Enhance Costs Savings
The healthcare industry has come to the realization of significant adjustments in some factors of patient safety in recent years. With the competitive marketplace, safety on patients is yielding savings by decreasing the incremental or flexible expenses of treatment. Developing a safe and favorable environment for patients and workers enhances productivity. The key aim of this essay is to explain how safety measures for patients enhance costs savings.
Many programs in the industry have embraced value-based payment methods. For many healthcare systems, the transition to this method to improve the safety of patients is crucial for financial survival (Katz, 2014). This system focuses on improving the quality of services offered to patients as a method of reducing costs (Kane, Weber, & Dasta, 2003). Many people accumulate large hospital bills from the correction of errors that befall them during treatment. To promote this aspect, health system managers and policymakers need to improve transparency on the cost of the adverse events and the savings that come from using safety investments. According to Katz (2014) method, this has presented the system leaders with the opportunity to enhance the progress by being clear on the repercussions of unsafe care so that they can expand that investment in patient safety and satisfaction by using the payment method is the right and most profitable thing.
The use of advanced clinical tools will also help in saving expenses. According to several studies, bloodstream infections can be reduced if healthcare professionals adopted the habit of using advanced and safe tools for patients. Mostly, these infections occur when germs or bacteria enter the catheter in a patient’s vein for facilitating treatment. Equipping hospitals with safe tools, as well as, resources will reduce the cases of infections and this will, in turn, lead to reduced expenses of treatments.
There is also the need to create materials for teaching and training professionals in healthcare to improve their care towards patients. The training materials and a teamwork system will improve communication and promote teamwork among these professionals (Nickitas, Middaugh, & Aries, 2016). These materials offer knowledge on the safety of patients. Programs that focus on clinical practices and patient safety with increased teamwork improve the quality of the product. They help practitioners to understand the principles that improve safety. Hence, practitioners should be provided with learning materials that will promote healthcare services.
Generating measures that will help in tracking data generated during patients diagnosis and treatment period will enhance cost-saving. Data products work a long way into providing information to practitioners, patients, and policymakers. They help in tracking down of the progress, catalyzing quality improvements, and identifying problematic areas. These resources help researchers and policymakers to identify the trends and know of any potential interventions. As such, data helps in evaluation of treatment progress to reduce errors and launch of quality-improved services.
Promoting patient safety by providing care based on evidence will also help in reducing costs. Through education and proactive avoidance, patients are able to realize the importance of observing their health. For instance, the latest clinical evidence can be used to treat osteoporosis patients, as well as, provide them with guidelines that will educate them on home health aspects (Kane et al., 2003). The programs that organizations have put in place to care for patients and the community have improved safety. There are community health centers opened that register patient with chronic diseases and other complications. These patients are assigned to a medical care provider and a medical home once the disease is identified. These care providers communicate with their patients so that they improve their care management (Kane et al., 2003). This approach has encouraged health practitioners to collaborate and ensure the right care is delivered. Compared to other treatments, patients in community centers receive closer attention and experience better treatment, which reduces the cost of staying in the hospital.
Again, there have been debates on how hospital costs can be controlled. This has experienced growth as hospitals put efforts to manage the labor cost, which has mainly affected nurses who are the major contributors in the labor field (Nickitas et al., 2016). Lower rates of nurses’ entry can result in low productivity giving room to errors to occur. Hence, one of the safety measures is ensuring that there are enough nurses and doctors to care for patients. This way, professionals have enough time to attend to one matter at a time, thus, reducing the chances of causing harm.
Today, results show that there is a tremendous change in hospitals with the aim of providing quality services to reduce expenses. The bodies involved in this aspect are committed to moving the healthcare system to a unit that provides valuable services while lowering the burden and the costs. Healthcare professionals take the aspect of improving patient safety critically and emphasize that amenities no longer matter (Kane et al., 2003). It enhances the ability of a practitioner to reduce the chances of causing harm to patients. Although the hospital-acquired complications have tremendously reduced, mistakes still happen. However, the manner in which the provider handles them is imperative to the safety initiatives.
Joint Commission Role
Most governments require that organizations in the healthcare industry should receive accreditation from the Joint Commission. The Joint Commission is an independent and nonprofit organization whose role is to evaluate and accredit healthcare organizations, as well as, programs. This is the most predominant body of accreditation and has been known as a sign of quality. Organizations must undergo an evaluation for about three years for them to earn and keep their Joint Commission’s approval (Nickitas et al., 2016). The Joint Commission has standards that mandate organizations to gauge and improve their performance. Its standards focus mainly on the patients’ safety and quality care. Mostly, these standards are kept depending on the feedback that the organization gets from the consumers, government agencies, and healthcare experts.
Reflection on My Future Role in Contributing to Patient Safety
Discussions on cost control and the nursing care provided in hospitals are independent. This means that each one stands with its own variables. There are many roles that one can adopt in the healthcare industry. As a nurse, it is my duty to ensure that I deliver quality care to patients with all due respect (Kane et al., 2003). Therefore, there are many things I can do to increase safety to patients. Supporting the safety culture is a great way of enhancing safety to patients. Every person on the team has the responsibility to observe these safety measures. The culture demonstrates a commitment to the emphasis on safety. It also encourages openness and learning from mistakes.
Another way I can improve safety is by observing communication. It is the responsibility of a nurse to speak up if they have observed something that is unsafe or when equipment does not perform as it should be. I believe that if I can communicate with the right authority about issues, measures will be implemented to curb problems. Engagement of patients during treatment will also improve the safety of care (Kane et al., 2003). This interaction will include asking various questions like what goals the patient has and listening and answering questions when a patient inquires about the care they are receiving. This creates a patient-friendly environment and patients can feel free to complain if caregivers are not addressing their needs. It allows practitioners to know how to improve their services. Honesty to patients about the occurrences and proper apologizing and communication assures the patient that what might have caused their current condition is being addressed accordingly, so that it does not affect or happen to another person. Hence, engaging patients during treatment is a great and efficient way that will improve their safety.
The Role of the Chief Nursing Officer Regarding Patient Safety
Due to the complexity of the healthcare system, the roles of the chief nursing officer are changing. Today, these professionals have a variety of responsibilities that include leadership and administrative roles. This professional is allowed by the administration in a hospital to maintain the clinical and care standards for patients (Nickitas et al., 2016). They include making sure that patients are kept safe and have access to the best care. To accomplish this, these officers work closely with hospital stakeholders and management to get the right infrastructure, as well as, resources. The professional is as well responsible for the formulation and implementation of nursing strategies.
The chief nursing officer performs the duty of the hospital administrator. They plan on the daily activities that should take place within the hospital. Such activities include directing, organizing, and coordinating medical services to comply with the regulations and policies of the government (Katz, 2014). In other instances, they assist in budget planning and setting of health services rates. Many hospitals use the chief nursing officers to help with the smooth operation of a hospital, as well as, the observation of the healthcare standards. They advise management on ways to recruit and train nurses. All these responsibilities work towards providing proper and high-quality care to patients and confirming that safety measures are observed throughout.
Keeping a favorable working environment between the nurses and physicians is always a challenge that many hospitals face. However, with this officer, it is possible to keep close links between these professionals. He or she ensures that doctors and other professionals receive the support they need in their particular departments (Kane et al., 2003). Such support may include retrieving information of a patient, providing the tools for diagnosis or observing patients depending on the directions of a doctor. This requires this professional to review hospital policies. Being the chief nursing officer is one of the most important responsibilities that require an understanding of the care policies that exist. It also calls for leadership and management skills to ensure that patients receive the right care.
High performance in healthcare means using the available resources wisely to deliver the right care to patients at the right time. It also means respecting the patients’ preferences, their families and making ways of reducing errors. There has been progress in patient safety, overthe recent years, which has come from the motivation of the healthcare professionals to protect their patients from any danger. Strengthening the link between financial success and safety has accelerated the progress towards a well-performing healthcare system. Organizations should take their part in observing the patient population needs have been addressed and engaging them during the treatment. Thee pillars of patient satisfaction like communication, empathy, and comfort are paramount but safety is essential to patients walking from encounters happy.
Kane, S. L., Weber, R. J., & Dasta, J. F. (2003). The impact of critical care pharmacists on enhancing patient outcomes. Intensive care medicine, 29(5), 691-698.
Katz, M. (2014). Healthcare made easy: Answers to all your healthcare questions under Affordable Care Act. Fairfield, OH: Adams Media: 9781440580 Nickitas, D.M., Middaugh, D. J. & Aries, N. (2016). Policy and politics for nurses and other health professions (2nd ed.): Advocacy and action. Sudbury, MA: Jones and Bartlett Publishers. 978-1284053296
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