Introduction: National Patient Safety Goals (NPSGs) is one of the ways through which The Joint Commission generates standards to ensure patient safety in healthcare institutions. The major focus is to prevent nosocomial infections, medication errors, clinical harm, etc. (Jefferson, 2022). This paper will focus on the rationale for applying National Patient Safety Goals, their benefits, and challenges during implementation.
Rationale For Applying the National Patient Safety Goals (NPSG)
The rationale for applying the national patient safety goals (NPSG) is to improve patient identification, prevent surgery mistakes, identify safety risks for health workers and patients, avoid nosocomial infections, reduce harm, ensure medication safety and cultivate effective communications among health caregivers (Jefferson, 2022).
The rationale for NPSG.02.03.01(improve the effectiveness of communication among caregivers) is to ensure diagnostic procedures and critical tests results are communicated to health workers on time (Jefferson, 2022). Critical results are life-threatening, requiring a quick response from health workers.
The American Association for Clinical Chemistry (AACC) stated, “In a rapidly changing information technology environment, lab results now compete with a swelling, cacophonous chorus of alerts and alarms that follow physicians throughout their day, often from the very electronic health records designed to streamline communications.” This indicates the need for health information guidelines for health workers.
Health workers should access critical results in an appropriate timeframe to treat patients properly and on time. For this to be effective, The Joint Commission recommends the development of written protocols for the management of critical results, i.e., specify the sender and receiver of the results (Jefferson, 2022). Also, the commission suggested the need to evaluate the timeliness of reporting critical results.
Benefits of implementing the National Patient Safety Goal
The first benefit of effective communication among healthcare providers is maintaining and improving patient safety (Regis, 2022). Health workers can access patient data/findings with proper and timely communication, hence diagnosing and treating patients appropriately. Also, appropriate communication reduced errors in medicine prescription and administration. These improve the quality of care and patient outcomes.
The second benefit of effective communication is improving the efficiency of medical and surgical procedures (Regis, 2022). When health care providers share information effectively, chances of misinformation are unlikely or minimal. These save the healthcare system unnecessary costs and eliminate danger to the patients. Additionally, poor communication might lead to a lack of procedural coordination, for example, confusion of appointments and procedures.
Challenges of implementing National Safety Goal
The first barrier to effective communication among health care providers is divided and siloed care processes (Carayon et al., 2022). Most of the healthcare system departments are designed and managed differently. The health workers are trained on effective communication within their departments rather than inter-professionally; these make communication and coordination difficult.
The second challenge is the reluctance of healthcare systems to adopt new ideas and innovations. Research indicates decentralized health organizations with enough resources are more likely to adapt to new ideas and innovations (Carayon et al., 2022). Contrary, hierarchical health organizations contribute to failure by creating an obstacle in implementing national safety goals. Also, limited technical expertise and time have been stumbling blocks in implementing national safety goals. With limited expertise during training and time availability, health workers don’t know how to communicate effectively and the protocols necessary for communication.
Carayon, P., Wooldridge, A., Hose, Z., & Salwei, M. (2022). Retrieved 8 February 2022, from https://psnet.ahrq.gov/issue/challenges-and-opportunities-improving-patient-safety-through-human-factors-and-systems.
Jefferson. (2022). Recognizing the Importance of Patient Safety Goals for Health Professionals. Jefferson Online. Retrieved 8 February 2022, from https://online.jefferson.edu/health-services/patient-safety-goals/.
Regis. (2022). Understanding the Importance of Communication in Health Care. Regis College Online. Retrieved 8 February 2022, from https://online.regiscollege.edu/blog/importance-communication-health-care/#:~:text=Effective%20communication%20%E2%80%94%20both%20intrahospital%20and,reduces%20chances%20of%20medical%20errors.
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