- October 3, 2014
"If you know how to prevent infections, you know how to protect patients from most adverse events."Ref 18-1 Kohn LT, Corrigan JM, Donaldson MS. To Err is Human: Building a Safer Health System . Washington, DC: National Academy Press, 2000. - You do not have permission to view this object. The patient safety movement in this country is thought to have begun in 1999, with the publication of the Institute of Medicine's report To Err is Human.Ref 18-1 Kohn LT, Corrigan JM, Donaldson MS. To Err is Human: Building a Safer Health System . Washington, DC: National Academy Press, 2000. - You do not have permission to view this object. In fact, formal efforts to keep patients safe began in the United States with the development of hospital infection prevention and control programs in the 1960s, and globally, even as far back as the mid-1800s, when Hungarian physician Ignaz Semmelweis and British nurse Florence Nightingale publicized the value of hand hygiene as an infection prevention technique. Currently, between 5 and 10 percent of patients admitted to acute care hospitals acquire one or more infections, representing the most common adverse event affecting approximately 2 million patients each year in the United States. It is estimated that 75,000 deaths and an estimated $33 billion per year reflect the healthcare burden of these complications.Ref 18-2 Burke JP. Infection control: a problem for patient safety. N Engl J Med 2003;348:651–656. - You do not have permission to view this object. ,Ref 18-3 Langmuir AD. The epidemic intelligence service of the center for disease control. Public Health Rep 1980;95:470–477. - You do not have permission to view this object. ,Ref 18-4 Scott II RD. The Direct Medical Costs of Healthcare-Associated Infections in U.S. Hospitals and the Benefits of Prevention . Centers for D... - You do not have permission to view this object. Ref 18-5 Centers for Disease Control. "HAI Data and Statistics." http://www.cdc.gov/hai/surveillance/index.html. Accessed December 7, 2017. - You do not have permission to view this object. These data demonstrate the critical link between infection prevention and control and improving patient safety.
Although the statistics on medical errors have been widely scrutinized, one cannot cast a blind eye to the additional 50,000 to 100,000 deaths annually caused by medication errors, falls, wrong site surgeries, missed diagnoses, or misidentified patients. There has been a public outcry and a national call to action to address this epidemic and focus on preventing all healthcare-related adverse events. Every healthcare professional, at every level, and across all healthcare settings, has been challenged to develop and implement programs to actively seek out risk and document harm (surveillance/reporting), to proactively design standardized processes and systems (prevention), and to create a culture where everyone with every action is responsible and accountable for patient safety (control). This chapter provides an overview of surveillance and disease prevention and control of the broader patient safety challenges and their role in national patient safety efforts.