According to the National Quality Forum, modest advances in patient safety have been made nationally since the NQF published its report Safe Practices for Better Healthcare—2006 Update. However, adverse healthcare events continue to be a leading cause of death and injury in the United States, even though well-documented methods continue to be available that could prevent the occurrence of such events.
The NQF's Safe Practices for Better Healthcare—2009 update presents 34 practices that have been demonstrated to be effective in reducing the occurrence of adverse healthcare events. The practices are organized into seven functional categories for improving patient safety:
• Creating and sustaining a culture of safety (Chapter 2);
• Informed consent, life-sustaining treatment, disclosure, and care of the caregiver (Chapter 3)
• Matching healthcare needs with service delivery capability (Chapter 4);
• Facilitating information transfer and clear communication (Chapter 5);
• Medication management (Chapter 6);
• Prevention of healthcare-associated infections (Chapter 7); and
• Condition- and site-specific practices (Chapter 8).
(SOURCES: National Quality Forum, http://qualityforum.org, accessed March 26, 2009)