Preventable patient harm costs healthcare billions annually, making strategies to improve patient safety an imperative for health systems. To improve patient safety, organizations must establish a safety culture that prioritizes safety throughout the system, supports blame-free reporting of safety events, and ensures that healthcare IT solutions functions and accessibility align with safety goals. A sociotechnical framework gives health systems a seven-part roadmap to improving patient safety culture:
- Leverages qualitative and quantitative data.
- Doesn’t rely on HIMSS stage levels to tell the complete safety picture.
- Gives frontline clinicians a voice in decision making.
- Makes IT solutions accessible to non-technical users.
- Encourages frontline clinicians to report safety and quality issues.
- Treats a safety issue in one area as a potential systemwide risk.
- Performs thorough due diligence before taking safety IT solutions live.