Patient Safety is one of the most important aspects of health care. All Dean Health Plan practitioners and providers are encouraged to join us in efforts to improve the safety of the care provided to our members.
To help you in considering patient safety initiatives that might be appropriate for your setting, we have included a few ideas:
- Decrease the use of specific drugs in situations in which they may be inappropriate (e.g., the use of antibiotics to treat viral upper respiratory infections).
- Decrease the use of medications that pose high risk to patients.
- Establish practices to enhance optimal prescribing practices (e.g., pre-printing prescription order sheets).
- Reduce or eliminate the use of telephone prescription orders.
- Reconcile patient medications at each ambulatory care visit, inpatient admission, and inpatient discharge (ask patients to bring their medications - prescriptions and over the counter - with them).
- Actively confirm patients' understanding of instructions for using medications (when/how to take it, how long to take it, possible side effects, who to call with questions).
- Eliminate the use of abbreviations in patient orders to prevent misunderstandings.