Healthcare organizations should strive to provide high-quality patient care. Hospital employees need to ensure that patients are safe from harm. Moreover, medical institutions should entrench a culture that ensures staff attends to client demands promptly for customer satisfaction. Additionally, the clinical team ought to integrate patients’ needs and preferences with clinical assessment or professional expertise to guide care decision-making which improves treatment outcomes. Measurable indicators ensure that hospital staff adheres to high standards of delivering quality care. For these reasons, it is imperative to design a quality improvement plan for patient safety at Thunder Hospital.
Current Issues Facing Thunder Hospital
The operational growth and increase in patient volumes present challenges to healthcare organizations. One major issue is often compromised quality of patient care. For instance, there has been an upsurge in medical errors in the facility. Consequently, medical errors have the potential of causing adverse health effects to patients, including permanent disabilities or mortality.
Moreover, the facility is experiencing the distressing trend of rising cases of nosocomial infection coupled with medical errors leading to prolonged hospital stays for the patients. Jha (2019) indicated that adverse health consequences following unsafe medical practices account for the significant causes of death and disabilities from injuries globally. However, the hospital healthcare workforce can learn from the undesired outcomes to refine patient care quality.
Quality Improvement Plan
The undesired health outcomes necessitate systematic procedures to modify the care practices for the refinement of patient care. Therefore, to combat hospital-acquired infections (HAI), a program for infection prevention is necessary. A hand hygiene project for healthcare providers and patients is a practical approach to mitigating HAI (Haverstick et al., 2017). For this reason, the project will involve nursing staff educating admitted patients on the hand hygiene process and the importance of controlling HAI. The hospital will provide hand sanitizers to individual patients, and avail hand washing sinks continuous running water, and hand washing detergents. Therefore, HAI is prevented by consistent hand hygiene by patients and hospital staff.
Medication errors constitute a more significant proportion of medical malpractices in the hospital. The situation is consistent with the global findings that most harmful errors occur due to the diagnosis, prescription, and administration of medicine (Auraaen, Slawomirski, & Klazinga, 2018). However, the correct use of the Electronic Health Record (EHR) can significantly reduce medication errors. The hospital should undertake the project to update the EHR system and install the Bar-Coded Medication Administration (BCMA) software for the hospital to accurately keep a record of patient drug information, including doses and allergies. Therefore, the nurse can counter-check the right drug and dose by scanning the patient’s identification bracelet. Healthcare staff will be reporting medical errors as they occur to the hospital management. The hospital will reward the unit that ensures consistent observance of hand hygiene and reduced medical malpractice rates in compliance with the facility’s refining value-added healthcare initiative.
Quality Improvement Tool
The hospital must design an instrument to identify and address healthcare challenges. Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA) is a famous approach for quality improvement in many healthcare organizations (Coury et al., 2017). Therefore, PDSA is the appropriate technique to improve the hospital’s healthcare quality. Management staff in the facility will constitute the quality improvement team. They will include infection prevention coordinators, nurse managers, and the leadership of the medical department. The team will begin the PDSA cyclic process by establishing the magnitude of the facility’s problems and strategizing the implementation of the quality improvement plan. Moreover, the team will ensure the nurses’ and clinicians’ involvement in utilizing the updated EHR system to reduce medical errors. The nurses will involve patients in education and the process of maintaining hand hygiene.
The executive management will appropriate the budget to facilitate quality improvement, including scheduling the EHR system’s upgrading. Additionally, the patients are essential stakeholders in the process by providing feedback regarding the impact of the implemented changes on their satisfaction. Subsequently, the quality improvement team will ensure the plan’s execution while monitoring the progress in terms of patient and clinical team reactions. The team will evaluate the success of the executed changes through indicators such as short hospital stays due to the absence of nosocomial infections and medical errors or reduced reports of medical errors and HAI in the Hospital.
Effects of Proposal Implementation
The execution of proposed measures to address the hospital’s challenges may have a profound impact on the hospital staff. The clinicians, physicians, and nurses may have difficulty utilizing the upgraded EHR system. Additionally, the scheduled upgrade may interfere with the physician’s routine of reviewing patients. Therefore, the hospital administrator may need to communicate in advance to the proposed system upgrade’s clinical team to mitigate the inconvenience. However, the proposed care modification will have a good reception from the stakeholders since it can improve patient and staff satisfaction.
Different cultures of the multidisciplinary team have the potential of causing conflict. The practical approach to minimizing the possibility of friction is through effective communication that builds teamwork among the healthcare providers, which reduces work burden and conflicts. Moreover, the quality improvement plan will reduce patient care costs to the hospital and the patient due to the low rate of morbidity from HAI and medical errors. Additionally, the plan’s success will inform the standardization of procedures for sustaining the quality of patient care. Therefore, the project will improve the hospital’s quality of healthcare.
Healthcare organizations should prioritize the provision of high-quality patient care. A significant proportion of morbidity and mortalities from medical errors and nosocomial infections are preventable. Therefore, healthcare professionals should ensure that patients are safe from harm related to medical malpractices or hospital-acquired infections. The consistent use of hand sanitizers and handwashing breaks the transmission of pathogenic microorganisms. Consequently, it prevents cross-patient infections and prolonged hospitalization from HAI.
Auraaen, A., Slawomirski, L., & Klazinga, N. (2018). The economics of patient safety in primary and ambulatory care: Flying blind. Web.
Coury, J., Schneider, J. L., Rivelli, J. S., Petrik, A. F., Seibel, E., D’Agostini, B.,… & Coronado, G. D. (2017). Applying the Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA) approach to a large pragmatic study involving safety net clinics. BMC Health Services Research, 17(1), 1-10. Web.
Haverstick, S., Goodrich, C., Freeman, R., James, S., Kullar, R., & Ahrens, M. (2017). Patients’ hand washing and reducing hospital-acquired infection. Critical Care Nurse, 37(3), e1-e8. Web.
Jha, A. K. (2019). Presentation at the “Patient Safety—A Grand Challenge for Healthcare Professionals and Policymakers Alike” a roundtable at the grand challenges meeting of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, 2018. Web.