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Improved Patient Safety
Other Promising Practices
Participants agreed that reducing medical errors and improving patient
safety is a complex, multi-faceted challenge requiring ingenuity, hard
work and a variety of interventions and strategies. Among the approaches
shared by the State teams were the following:
- A number of States have focused attention on reducing medical errors
and improving patient safety. They have established and/or resurrected
multidisciplinary collaborations, coalitions, and task forces to push
the States' patient safety agenda forward. Many State efforts specifically
designed to improve patient safety at the delivery system level have
focused on establishing systems to identify and reduce medical errors,
developing and implementing best practice standards, and conducting
educational and training programs for physicians, nurses, and other
health care professionals.
- Opportunities for legislators to learn more about the complexity and
importance of patient safety include legislative luncheons, briefings,
etc. In some States, legislators have begun to develop legislation on
patient safety reporting systems that focus on learning rather than
blaming the caregivers.
- Other efforts at the State level focus on educating and informing patients and families on their role in the process. Patient safety brochures, such as those developed by AHRQ, and other educational materials have been developed to encourage consumers to become actively involved in their care (http://www.ahrq.gov/consumer/20tips.htm).
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