Patient safety incidents associated with failures in communication reported from critical care units in the North West of England between 2009 and 2014

March 23, 2016

Source:  Journal of the Intensive Care Society [Epub ahead of print]

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Date of publication: February 2016

Publication type:  Journal article

In a nutshell:  Communication is central to the safe and effective delivery of critical care. This article presents a retrospective analysis of hospital incident reports attributed to communication that were generated by 30 intensive care units in the North West of England from 2009 to 2014. The study reviewed when during the critical care pathway incidents occur, the personnel involved, the method of communication used, the type of information communicated and the level of harm associated with the incident. The study found that patient safety incidents tend to occur when patients are transferred into or out of the intensive care unit and when information has to be communicated to other teams during the critical care stay. Ways that the patient handover process may be modified to improve communication and safety are also examined.

Length of publication:  1 webpage

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An analysis of patient safety incidents associated with medications reported from critical care units in the North West of England between 2009 and 2012

August 27, 2014

Source:  Anaesthesia 69/7 pp. 735-45

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Date of publication:  July 2014

Publication type:  Journal article

In a nutshell:  One of the key tools promoted for improving patient safety in healthcare is incident reporting. The authors of this study analysed 2238 patient safety incidents involving medications submitted from up to 29 critical care units in the North West of England every year between 2009 and 2012. 452 of the incidents led to harm to patients. The most commonly reported drugs were noradrenaline, heparins, morphine and insulin. The administration of drugs was the stage where incidents were most commonly reported. This was also the stage most likely to harm patients. The authors conclude that quality improvement initiatives could improve medication safety in the units studied.

Length of Publication:  11 pages

Some important notes: Please contact your local NHS Library for the full text of the article. Follow this link to find your local NHS Library


New team to ‘improve patient safety’ at Noble’s hospital

February 26, 2014

Source:  BBC News

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Date of publication:  February 2014

Publication type:  News item

In a nutshell:  The Department of Health has announced that a “patient safety improvement” team has been created at Noble’s hospital in the Isle of Man. According to the government, the critical care outreach team, made up of qualified practitioners, has been established to “enhance care”. The first area to be examined is the care of critically ill patients. The outreach service will operate seven days a week, between 07:15 and 20:45.

Length of Publication:  1 web page


One step for patient safety: small steps to change

September 28, 2011

Source:  Patient Safety First

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Date of publication: August 2011

Publication type:  Practical guidelines

In a nutshell:  These guidelines look at the activities that can be taken to improve patient care.  Some of the areas focussed on are leadership, high risk meds, patient deterioration and critical care.

Length of publication:  1 web page