Accountability for Clinical Outcomes and Promoting Safety and Quality

Throughout your education, patient safety and improving the quality of patient care have been examined. Through numerous readings and media pieces, you have heard about Never Events. These are serious and costly medical errors that are preventable, such as wrong-side surgery, medication errors, and hospital-acquired infections. Each of these types of medical errors is preventable. The consequences of such errors are now financial as well as legal and emotional. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services no longer reimburse for medical errors classified as Never Events.

As a nurse, how can you help to prevent these types of medical errors? What is your accountability for clinical outcomes? There are standards and core measures in place that guide nursing practice. In addition, the National Database of Nursing Quality Indicators (NDNQI) examines those components of clinical care that are specific to nursing. The NDNQI quantifies, or assesses, these nurse-sensitive components and provides specific feedback on how well nursing practice is being executed in those areas related to patient care.

This week, you will consider a series of articles that focus on strategies for ensuring safety and quality care for patients. You will also explore how successful, efficient teamwork between nurses, nursing leaders, physicians, and other medical personnel can help prevent many of the Never Events from occurring and decrease the likelihood of such events in the future.

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