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					On the radar
Issue 33
21 March 2011

Once again, this issue of the On the Radar is a little longer than normal – the consequence of being
away for a week allied with the publication of issues of Health Affairs and BMJ Quality and Safety.

On the Radar is a summary of some of the recent publications in the areas of safety and quality in
health care. Inclusion in this document is not an endorsement or recommendation of any publication
or provider.

On the Radar is available via email or as a PDF document from
http://www.safetyandquality.gov.au/internet/safety/publishing.nsf/Content/com-pubs_OnTheRadar-01

If you would like to receive On the Radar via email, please contact us at
mail@safetyandquality.gov.au

For information about the Commission and its programs and publications, please visit
http://www.safetyandquality.gov.au/


This week’s content
Reports

ARHQ reports study how community-acquired methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus is
managed in health care settings
             The US Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) funded
             three reports on community-acquired methicillin-resistant
             Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). The reports stem from two-year
             projects conducted by AHRQ’s Practice-Based Research Networks.
             The studies found:
                 • An intervention to optimize treatment for skin and soft tissue
                     infections consistent with the community-acquired MRSA
                     guidelines intervention resulted in an increase in antibiotic use
                     and the proportion of prescribed antibiotics that covered MRSA.
  Notes
                 • Rural primary care providers were more likely to prescribe
                     antibiotics that covered MRSA at the initial patient visit after
                     CDC guidelines were implemented.
                 • Recommend that primary care practices develop documentation
                     and coding presentations; integrate templates into electronic
                     medical records for describing skin and soft tissue infections;
                     and hold workshops in the management of skin and soft tissue
                     infections and that these improve the quality of care for
                     individuals with skin or soft tissue infections.
  URL        http://www.ahrq.gov/qual/mrsa/


On the Radar Issue 33                                                                              1
For information on the Commission’s healthcare associated infection work, including a link to the
Australian Guidelines for the Prevention and Control of Infection in Healthcare (2010), see
http://www.safetyandquality.gov.au/internet/safety/publishing.nsf/Content/PriorityProgram-03

Commonwealth Fund
Keeping the Commitment: A Progress Report on Four Early Leaders in Patient Safety Improvement
             From the Commonwealth Fund email:
             It has been just over a decade since the Institute of Medicine (IOM)
             issued To Err Is Human, the landmark report that vividly documented
             the scope of patient safety problems within U.S. health care system.…
             The Commonwealth Fund [has released]… a new set of case studies
             exploring the progress made by four of these early leaders in patient
             safety:
                 • Johns Hopkins Medicine, an academic medical centre and non-
                     profit integrated health care system that set a goal in 2002 of
                     making its care the safest in the world.
                 • Sentara Healthcare, an integrated system that developed a
                     systematic program to foster a culture of safety throughout its
  Notes
                     member hospitals.
                 • OSF HealthCare has promoted a collaborative approach to
                     patient safety improvement.
                 • U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, which formed the National
                     Center for Patient Safety to instil an organizational culture of
                     safety within its nationwide network of hospitals and outpatient
                     clinics.
             Each of the cases describes the development of practical methods for
             training, coaching, and motivating staff to engage in patient safety
             work; the deployment of information systems, standardized clinical
             processes, and other tools to facilitate clear communication; and the
             system-wide adoption of safety as a chief priority.
             http://www.commonwealthfund.org/Content/Publications/Case-
  URL
             Studies/2011/Mar/Keeping-the-Commitment.aspx

Cardiovascular disease: Australian facts 2011
Australian Institute of Health and Welfare
Cardiovascular disease series no. 35. Cat. no. CVD 53. Canberra: AIHW.
              From the AIHW email: ‘Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is a very
              common and serious disease in Australia with about 3.5 million people
              reporting having the condition in 2007-08. Despite significant advances
              in the treatment of CVD and for some of its risk factors, it remains the
              cause of more deaths than any other disease - about 50,000 in 2008 -
  Notes       and the most expensive, costing about $5.9 billion in 2004-05. And not
              all sectors of Australian society are affected equally by CVD with
              people in lower socioeconomic groups, Aboriginal and Torres Strait
              Islander people and those living in the remote areas of Australia often
              more likely to be hospitalised with, or to die from CVD than other
              members of the population.’
              http://www.aihw.gov.au/publication-
  URL
              detail/?id=10737418510&libID=10737418510



On the Radar Issue 33                                                                               2
Books

Patient Safety and Quality: An Evidence-Based Handbook for Nurses
Hughes RG (ed.)
AHRQ Publication No. 08-0043
Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; March 2008.
              Form the US ARHQ:
              Nurses play a vital role in improving the safety and quality of patient
              care—not only in the hospital or ambulatory treatment facility, but also
              of community-based care and the care performed by family members.
              Nurses need know what proven techniques and interventions they can
              use to enhance patient outcomes.
              To address this need, AHRQ, with additional funding from the Robert
              Wood Johnson Foundation, has prepared this comprehensive, 1,400-
  Notes       page, handbook for nurses on patient safety and quality. Experts in the
              field reviewed the literature, and their contributions are grouped into
              these sections:
                  • Patient Safety and Quality
                  • Evidence-based Practice
                  • Patient-centered Care
                  • Working Conditions—Work Environment
                  • Critical Opportunities for Patient Safety and Quality
                  • Tools.
  URL         http://www.ahrq.gov/qual/nurseshdbk/
  TRIM        46033

Safer Hospital Care: Strategies for Continuous Innovation
Raheja D.
New York: Productivity Press, 2011.
              According to the ARHQ PSNet synopsis this book ‘provides various
   Notes      strategies to drive innovation in patient safety, including how to
              eliminate unsafe practices’.
              http://www.crcpress.com/ecommerce_product/product_detail.jsf?isbn=9
   URL
              781439821022


Journal articles

The development of quality indicators for community pharmacy care
De Bie J, Kijlstra NB, Daemen BJG, Bouvy ML
BMJ Quality & Safety 2011 [epub].
               Paper describing the process and activities in the development of the
               Dutch quality indicators for community pharmacy care. From a
               preliminary list of 159 topics a final set of 42 indicators was developed.
  Notes
               This set includes indicators on patient counselling (6), clinical risk
               management (10), compounding (7), dispensing (3), monitoring of
               medication use (11) and quality management (5).
  DOI          http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmjqs.2010.045237




On the Radar Issue 33                                                                       3
For information on the Commission’s activities relating to indicators, see
http://www.safetyandquality.gov.au/internet/safety/publishing.nsf/Content/PriorityProgram-
08_NationalIndicators


The Need for Systems Integration in Health Care
Mathews SC, Pronovost PJ
JAMA: The Journal of the American Medical Association 2011;305(9):934-935.
             A commentary by Simon Mathews and the prolific Peter Pronovost
             advocating a systems approach for implementing technologies to
             improve safety and efficiency in hospitals. They argue that to not do so
             is in itself a safety issue. Their model of an integrator comes from
             aviation in the form of Boeing. Whether Boeing is an integrator or a
             manufacturer is something of a moot point. It is not clear whether the
             authors see a role for a commercial entity to offer ‘integrated solutions’
             or even completely integrated facilities.
             Recognising that health is a sector made up of many players who wish
  Notes      to maintain their autonomy and decision-making role may mean a
             systems integration approach may have greater traction within settings
             where there is a substantial level of control over procurement and
             standards setting. In concluding the commentary the authors suggest
             that in the USA this may be more readily achieved in an academic
             setting. They see that the collaboration between health care
             professionals, administrators, researchers, human factors and systems
             engineers, and industry can be encouraged in a ‘learning laboratory’ and
             that ‘university-based academic medical centers, with schools of public
             health and engineering, make the ideal conveners for such an entity’.
  DOI        http://dx.doi.org/10.1001/jama.2011.237

Effective quality improvement of thromboprophylaxis in acute medicine
Clark BM, d'Ancona G, Kinirons M, Hunt BJ, Hopper A
BMJ Quality & Safety 2011 [epub].
               Paper describing the introduction and outcomes of venous
               thromboembolism (VTE) guideline in a London NHS foundation trust.
               The guidline was launched and implemented using a multidisciplinary
               and multiple intervention approach involving education and feedback,
               IT intervention, verbal and written reminders, regular audit and process
               redesign. A 2008 showed that the rate of adherence had increased from
               56% pre-guideline to 96%. However, a repeat audit in 2009 suggested
               that even though the majority of patients were receiving appropriate
   Notes       thromboprophylaxis, risk assessment documentation was poor. This
               resulted in treatment being provided to some low-risk patients when it
               was not required.
               The authors conclude that ‘the most effective means of achieving VTE
               guideline adherence is to establish a thromboprophylaxis culture. This
               can be accomplished through a multiple intervention and continuous
               feedback approach. However, it is essential to ensure that a
               comprehensive VTE risk assessment is carried out to ensure that those
               not requiring treatment do not receive it unnecessarily.’
   DOI         http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmjqs.2010.044503


On the Radar Issue 33                                                                        4
For information on the 2009 Clinical Practice Guideline for the Prevention of Venous
Thromboembolism (Deep Vein Thrombosis and Pulmonary Embolism) in Patients Admitted to
Australian Hospitals, see http://www.nhmrc.gov.au/nics/programs/vtp/prevention.htm

Impact of hospital-wide process redesign on clinical outcomes: a comparative study of internally
versus externally led intervention
Scott IA, Wills R-A, Coory M, Watson MJ, Butler F, Waters M, et al.
BMJ Quality & Safety 2011 [epub].
              Paper describing and contrasting the experiences of a number of
              Queensland tertiary hospitals undergoing process re-design. In this
              instance, demand for hospital beds had led to institution-wide clinical
              process redesign for improving efficiency. The major contrast the
              authors examined was that between external and internal-led
              interventions.
              The authors assert the following results:
              ‘At one externally led redesign hospital, control charts indicated a
              decrease in ED access block outside control limits which coincided with
              the intervention, but this was not subsequently sustained. There were no
              special-cause variations seen in the other hospital. In contrast, at the
   Notes      internally led redesign hospital, there were two decreases in access
              block outside control limits during the intervention period, resulting in a
              decrease from a baseline average of 55% to a post-intervention average
              of 22%. All hospitals showed declines in elective surgery waits with
              oscillations in data indicating the existence of special-cause factors
              other than redesign.’
              These led them to conclude that ‘Internally led …redesign led to
              superior and sustained improvements in ED access block as a result of
              major structural reforms that were driven by committed clinicians and
              managers and cut across departmental boundaries.’
              The role of clinician leadership, autonomy and culture are all important,
              but so too are shared goals and expectations.
   DOI        http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmjqs.2010.042150

Defining Safe Use of Anesthesia in Children
Rappaport R, Mellon RD, Simone A, Woodcock J
New England Journal of Medicine 2011 [epub].
              Article published in the NEJM’s ‘Perspectives’ section written by four
              authors from the US FDA raising concerns about anaesthesia use for
              children, but stressing that there is no conclusive evidence to support a
              change in practice. The FDA’s Anesthetic and Life Support Drugs
              Advisory Committee was to meet on 10 March 2011. The authors state
  Notes
              that ‘We need to definitively answer the questions of whether anesthetic
              use in children poses a risk to their development and, if so, under what
              circumstances. Although withholding anesthesia from children who
              need surgery is unreasonable, obtaining more information about safe use
              is imperative.’
  URL         http://healthpolicyandreform.nejm.org/?p=13897




On the Radar Issue 33                                                                              5
BMJ Quality and Safety (Vol 20 Issue 3).
             1 March saw the publication of the latest issue of BMJ Quality and
             Safety (Vol 20 Issue 3). A number of the papers in this issue have been
             discussed in previous issues of On the Radar (when they were published
             online). This issue of BMJ Quality and Safety contains the following:
                 • Which factors are important for the successful development and
                     implementation of clinical pathways? A qualitative study
                 • Diagnosing a learning practice: the validity and reliability of a
                     learning practice inventory
                 • Evaluation of an instrument to measure teamwork in
                     multidisciplinary critical care teams
                 • Quality of after-hours primary care in the Netherlands:
                     adherence to national guidelines
                 • Guideline adaptation: an approach to enhance efficiency in
                     guideline development and improve utilisation
                 • The relationship of the emotional climate of work and threat to
  Notes
                     patient outcome in a high-volume thoracic surgery operating
                     room team
                 • Peri-operative medical emergency team activation in liver
                     transplantation
                 • Three success factors for continual improvement in healthcare:
                     an analysis of the reports of improvement team members
                 • Assessing the adequacy of pressure ulcer prevention in hospitals:
                     a nationwide prevalence survey
                 • Descriptions of verbal communication errors between staff. An
                     analysis of 84 root cause analysis-reports from Danish hospitals
                 • Prevalence and outcomes of use of potentially inappropriate
                     medicines in older people: cohort study stratified by residence in
                     nursing home or in the community
                 • Better use of primary care laboratory services following
                     interventions to ‘market’ clinical guidelines in New Zealand
  URL        http://qualitysafety.bmj.com/content/vol20/issue3/

Local adaptation and evaluation of a falls risk prevention approach in acute hospitals
Walsh W, Hill KD, Bennell K, Vu M, Haines TP.
International Journal for Quality in Health Care 2011;23(2):134-141.
               Paper reporting on the modification of a falls management approach in
               two Melbourne hospitals. The project sought to examine if adapting a
               falls risk factor assessment tool could produce an instrument with
               clinimetric properties sufficient to support an acute hospital's falls
               prevention program. The study sough to compare the new instrument
               (Western Health Falls Risk Assessment, WHeFRA) and ‘gold standard
   Notes
               tool’ (STRATIFY).
               Of the 130 patients in the study, 7 fell, with the local instrument more
               accurate at predicting fallers. The authors concluded that ‘adaptation of
               an existing tool resulted in an instrument with favorable clinimetric
               properties and may be a viable procedure for facilitating falls prevention
               program development and implementation in acute hospital settings’.
   DOI         http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/intqhc/mzq075


On the Radar Issue 33                                                                       6
For information on the Falls Prevention Guidelines, see
http://www.safetyandquality.gov.au/internet/safety/publishing.nsf/Content/FallsGuidelines

Health Affairs (Vol 30, No. 3)
              This issue of Health Affairs focuses on a number of US health care
              systems that have launched care delivery innovations. Supported in part
              by The Commonwealth Fund, the 15 innovation profiles describe how a
              wide variety of organisations are working to overcome multiple
              challenges in pursuit of the Triple Aim of improving population health
              and patients' experience while reducing costs. One project included
              placing clinics in supermarkets so as to offer better access to primary
              care. The 15 profiles are:
                  • At UPMC, Improving Care Processes to Serve Patients Better
                      and Cut Costs
                  • Changing the Conversation in California About Care Near the
                      End of Life
                  • A New Care Paradigm Slashes Hospital Use and Nursing Home
                      Stays for the Elderly and the Physically and Mentally Disabled
                  • Using Teams, Real-Time Information, and Teleconferencing to
                      Improve Elders' Hospital Care
                  • A Health Plan Spurs Transformation of Primary Care Practices
                      into Better-Paid Medical Homes
  Notes           • Predictive Modeling and Team Care for High-Need Patients at
                      HealthCare Partners
                  • At Martin's Point in Maine, Primary Care Teams for Chronic
                      Disease Patients
                  • Restructuring Care in a Federally Qualified Health Center to
                      Better Meet Patients’ Needs
                  • Charting a Life-and-Health Cycle and Expanded Primary Care
                      Options for Patients in Wisconsin
                  • Redesigning Acute Care Processes in Wisconsin
                  • The 'GRACE' Model: In-Home Assessments Lead to Better Care
                      for Dual Eligibles
                  • Improving the Coordination of Care for Medicaid Beneficiaries
                      in Pennsylvania
                  • Taking Public Health Approaches to Care in Massachusetts
                  • Vermont's Blueprint for Medical Homes, Community Health
                      Teams, and Better Health at Lower Cost
                  • Targeted Care Improvements Show Promising Results for
                      Treating Children with Asthma.
  URL         http://content.healthaffairs.org/content/30/3.toc

Improving Quality in Long-Term Care
Koren MJ
Medical Care Research and Review 2010;67(4 suppl):141S-150S.
             Paper by a Commonwealth Fund staff member looking at two
             approaches to achieving higher quality in long-term care in the USA:
  Notes
             the regulatory process and culture change. She concludes that improving
             the quality care in long-term care requires the survey, regulation, and


On the Radar Issue 33                                                                       7
              enforcement system, as well as voluntary efforts, such as quality
              campaigns and the culture change movement.
              Clearly while the context may differ from that here, there are parallels.
  URL         http://mcr.sagepub.com/content/67/4_suppl/141S.full.pdf+html

Professional values and reported behaviours of doctors in the USA and UK: quantitative survey
Roland M, Rao SR, Sibbald B, Hann M, Harrison S, Walter A, et al
BMJ Quality & Safety 2011 [epub].
              Paper reporting on the apparent differences in values and behaviours
              between US and UK doctors, and the extent to which these vary with
              the context of care. By surveying 1,891 US and 1,078 UK doctors
              completed the survey (64.4% and 40.3% response rate respectively) the
              authors found that UK doctors were more likely to have developed
              practice guidelines (82.8% UK vs 49.6% US, p<0.001) and to have
              taken part in a formal medical error-reduction programme (70.9% UK
              vs 55.7% US, p<0.001).
              US doctors were more likely to agree about the need for periodic
              recertification (completely agree 23.4% UK vs 53.9% US, p<0.001).
              Nearly a fifth of doctors had direct experience of an impaired or
  Notes
              incompetent colleague in the previous 3 years. Where the doctor had not
              reported the colleague to relevant authorities, reasons included thinking
              that someone else was taking care of the problem, believing that nothing
              would happen as a result, or fear of retribution.
              UK doctors were more likely than US doctors to agree that significant
              medical errors should always be disclosed to patients. More US doctors
              reported that they had not disclosed an error to a patient because they
              were afraid of being sued.
              The authors suggest that the context of care may influence both how
              professional values are expressed and the extent to which behaviours are
              in line with stated values.
  DOI         http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmjqs.2010.048173

Assessing patient safety culture in New Zealand primary care: a pilot study using a modified
Manchester Patient Safety Framework in Dunedin general practices
Wallis K, Dovey S
Journal of Primary Health Care 2011;3(1):35-40.u
              New Zealand study reporting on the local adaptation and use of a UK
              tool for assessing safety culture in primary care. The authors modified
              the Manchester Patient Safety Framework (MaPSaF) and used it in 12
              Dunedin general practices at baseline and at three months. Participants
              were all practice personnel present in the practice on the day.
   Notes      Participants rated their practice on each of the nine MaPSaF dimensions
              of safety culture, then discussed the dimensions and their scores and
              chose a practice-wide consensus score for each dimension. The study
              found that the framework directed team discussion about patient safety
              issues and facilitated communication and prompted some practices to
              make changes.
              http://www.rnzcgp.org.nz/march-2011
   URL        http://www.rnzcgp.org.nz/assets/documents/Publications/JPHC/March-
              2011/JPHCOSPWallisMarch11.pdf


On the Radar Issue 33                                                                           8
Safety issues related to the electronic medical record (EMR): synthesis of the literature from the
last decade, 2000-2009
Harrington L, Kennerly D, Johnson C
J Healthc Manag 2011;56(1):31-43; discussion 43-34.u
               A review of technologies, including computerised physician order entry,
               clinical decision support systems, and bar-coded medication
               administration discusses the risks created by health care information
   Notes       technology. The authors seek to generate an appreciation of the
               complexity surrounding the use of electronic records and an
               understanding of the safety issues in order to mandate sound EMR
               design, development, implementation, and use.
   URL         http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21323026

For information on the Commission’s activities relating to safety in e-health, see
http://www.safetyandquality.gov.au/internet/safety/publishing.nsf/Content/PriorityProgram-
08_eHealthSafety


What Distinguishes Top-Performing Hospitals in Acute Myocardial Infarction Mortality Rates?
Curry LA, Spatz E, Cherlin E, Thompson JW, Berg D, Ting HH, et al
Annals of Internal Medicine 2011;154(6):384-390.
              This study examined the top and lowest rated hospitals for their
              treatment of AMI in order to determine what it was that allowed the
              better ranked hospitals to obtain better outcomes for AMI patients.
              As the author’s noted, mortality rates for patients with acute myocardial
              infarction (AMI) can vary substantially between hospitals, even when
              adjusted for patient severity; however, little is known about hospital
              factors that may influence this variation. This study sought to identify
              factors that may be related to better performance in AMI care.
              In 2009, the researchers conducted site visits and in-depth interviews
              with 158 members of hospital staff, all of whom were involved with
  Notes
              AMI care at 11 US hospitals that had ranked in either the top or the
              bottom 5% in risk-standardized mortality rates for 2 recent years of data
              from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (2005 to 2006 and
              2006 to 2007).
              The authors concluded that:
              ‘High-performing hospitals were characterized by an organizational
              culture that supported efforts to improve AMI care across the hospital.
              Evidence-based protocols and processes, although important, may not
              be sufficient for achieving high hospital performance in care for patients
              with AMI’.
              http://www.annals.org/content/154/6/384.abstract
  URL
              http://dx.doi.org/10.1059/0003-4819-154-6-201103150-00003

Cognitive performance-altering effects of electronic medical records: an application of the human
factors paradigm for patient safety
Holden R
Cognition, Technology & Work 2011;13(1):11-29.



On the Radar Issue 33                                                                                9
              Paper reporting on a study into the impact of electronic health records
              on cognitive performance, illustrating both desirable and undesirable
              implications for patient safety.
              From the abstract: ‘According to the human factors paradigm for patient
              safety, health care work systems and innovations such as electronic
   Notes      medical records do not have direct effects on patient safety. Instead,
              their effects are contingent on how the clinical work system, whether
              computerized or not, shapes health care providers’ performance of
              cognitive work processes.’ It would appear that one of the keys to the
              successful implementation of technology is how it fits into the workflow
              and practices.
   DOI        http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10111-010-0141-8

Improving patient safety in radiation oncology
Hendee WR, Herman MG
Medical Physics 2010;38(1):78-82.
             A commentary piece on radiation safety issues that also describes
             recommendations from a working meeting entitled ‘Safety in Radiation
             Therapy: A Call to Action’ convened by the American Association of
  Notes      Physicists in Medicine and the American Society of Radiation
             Oncology. The meeting yielded 20 recommendations that apparently
             provide a pathway to reducing errors and improving patient safety in
             radiation therapy facilities.
  DOI        http://dx.doi.org/10.1118/1.3522875

Partial do-not-resuscitate orders: a hazard to patient safety and clinical outcomes?
Sanders A, Schepp M, Baird M
Critical Care Medicine 2011;39:14-18.
              A review piece on the potential risks that may arise from partial do-not-
   Notes      resuscitate orders, including misunderstandings that could create delays
              in care.
   DOI        http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/CCM.0b013e3181feb8f6

Nurse Staffing and Inpatient Hospital Mortality
Needleman J, Buerhaus P, Pankratz VS, Leibson CL, Stevens SR, Harris M
New England Journal of Medicine 2011;364(11):1037-1045.
              The issue of nurse-patient ratios is a topical one, including a campaign
              coinciding with the NSW election. This paper reports on a retrospective
              observational study that used data from a US tertiary academic medical
              centre involving 197,961 admissions and 176,696 nursing shifts of 8
              hours each in 43 hospital units to examine the association between
  Notes       mortality and patient exposure to nursing shifts during which staffing by
              RNs was 8 hours or more below the staffing target.
              The authors conclude that there is a relationship between nursing levels
              and inpatient mortality and that ‘staffing of RNs below target levels was
              associated with increased mortality, which reinforces the need to match
              staffing with patients' needs for nursing care’.
  DOI         http://dx.doi.org/10.1056/NEJMsa1001025




On the Radar Issue 33                                                                     10
Online Resources

IHI Expedition, Early Warning Systems: The Next Level of Rapid Response
http://www.ihi.org/IHI/Programs/AudioAndWebPrograms/ExpeditionEarlyWarningSystemsTheNex
tLevelofRapidResponse.htm
From the US Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI): Many hospitals have implemented rapid
response teams and found that their quick reactions can help improve outcomes. While rapid
response teams are a valuable resource, there can be limits to what they can accomplish once called.
Because of this, many organizations have implemented early warning systems to identify
deteriorating patients earlier – getting them the care they need sooner.
The IHI is conducting its Expedition, Early Warning Systems: The Next Level of Rapid Response.
Over the course of six web-based sessions, expert faculty will provide the tools and guidance to
successfully implement an early warning system.

For information on the Commission’s work on recognising and responding to clinical deterioration,
see http://www.safetyandquality.gov.au/internet/safety/publishing.nsf/Content/prog-patientsrisk-lp


ARHQ Health Care Innovations Exchange
http://www.innovations.ahrq.gov/
Personal Electronic Health Records examples http://www.innovations.ahrq.gov/issue.aspx?id=97
The US Health Care Innovations Exchange website showcases three programs that have used
personal health record systems in various ways to improve care. In one program, physicians at the
Palo Alto Medical Foundation used a comprehensive, integrated electronic and personal health
record system to gain immediate access to each patient’s full medical record during visits, provide
patient education, write prescriptions, monitor patient progress, and complete other tasks. In another
program, Howard University’s Diabetes Treatment Center offers patients access to a free online
personal health record to assist in monitoring blood sugar, blood pressure, weight, cholesterol, and
other clinical indicators. In the third program, Wind Youth Services offers a Web-based personal
health information service to homeless and runaway adolescents aged 11 to 22 years. Also featured
on the website are three QualityTools—Health Shack™, Personal Health Record (PHR) Checklist,
and myPHR—that serve as resources to assist health care consumers in creating their own personal
health records.

Why not the best?      http://www.whynotthebest.org/
To coincide with Patient Safety Awareness Week in the USA, WhyNotTheBest.org has updated and
expanded its data on the incidence of central line–associated bloodstream infections (CLABSIs),
one of the most lethal hospital-acquired complications. The site now includes standardized infection
ratios for some 1,050 U.S. hospitals—showing wide variation in CLABSI incidence, despite strong
evidence on how to prevent these infections. The goal of WhyNotTheBest.org is to foster health
care quality improvement by promoting transparency and public reporting, and by providing tools
and case studies of top performers to aid organizations in their own improvement efforts.

Disclaimer
On the radar is an information resource of the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in
Health Care. The Commission is not responsible for the content of, nor does it endorse, any articles
or sites listed. The Commission accepts no liability for the information or advice provided by these
external links. Links are provided on the basis that users make their own decisions about the
accuracy, currency and reliability of the information contained therein. Any opinions expressed are
not necessarily those of the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care.


On the Radar Issue 33                                                                              11

				
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