This from MGMA:
ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (Jan. 19, 2009) – Physician practices now have free access to three new online resources to help improve patient safety. The Health Research and Educational Trust (HRET), the Institute for Safe Medication Practices (ISMP) and the Medical Group Management Association (MGMA) have released Pathways for Patient Safety™, a series of Web-based tools aimed at increasing awareness, knowledge and implementation of best practices to reduce the risk of patient harm in physician practices. The Pathways tools can be downloaded for free at www.pathwaysforpatientsafety.org.
The free tools are instructive modules:
- Working as a Team – outlines actions required to build high-performing patient safety teams and techniques for effective communication among caregivers and with patients to reduce patient harm.
- Assessing Where You Stand – provides practical steps to minimize medical errors by assessing current patient-safety procedures, addressing practice culture and setting goals.
- Creating Medication Safety – describes factors practices should consider when implementing or augmenting a medication reconciliation process, and when prescribing or administering medications.
“Practice administrators are on the front lines of patient safety, because they are responsibility for creating and implementing procedures that can help minimize medical errors and unwanted outcomes,” says William F. Jessee, MD, FACMPE, MGMA president and CEO. “The Pathways series is the first-of-its-kind tailor made resource for group practice leaders, designed to address patient safety across the physician office setting. We urge all medical practice professionals to download these tools and begin creating safety plans that work for their organizations.”
The modules in the Pathways for Patient Safety series were designed to be used either singly or as a set, depending on a practice’s needs. The modules combine step-by-step, instructions with templates and additional resources. Tool content is based on findings of a 2006 patient safety self-assessment of medical groups, input from an expert panel and feedback from a representative group of pilot practices that reviewed the tools. Funding for development of the 2006 assessment and Pathways toolkit came from The Commonwealth Fund’s Program on Health Care Quality Improvement and Efficiency.
“Medication safety is an essential part of patient safety, and the Creating Medication Safety module in the Pathways program will help all physician practices to assess their medication-related procedures and identify risk-reduction strategies,” says Allen J. Vaida, PharmD, FASHP,executive vice president of ISMP.
The Pathways for Patient Safety series builds on an earlier effort by HRET, ISMP and MGMA. In 2006, the partners launched the Physician Practice Patient Safety Assessment? (PPPSA) www.physiciansafetytool.org, a self-assessment tool that helps physician practices evaluate their patient safety processes and detect areas for improvement. The PPPSA covers 79 areas related to medication safety, patient handoffs and transitions, practice management and culture, and related topics. HRET, ISMP and MGMA conducted a national survey of 200 representative physician practices using the assessment as a survey instrument; the findings were used in the development of the Pathways tools.
“The Pathways for Patient Safety tools are particularly timely given the increasing complexity of care being provided in physician practices and the relative lack of patient safety resources tailored to this setting,” said Maulik S. Joshi, DrPH, president of HRET.
The Pathways for Patient Safety tools also extend the work of another similar initiative focused on the hospital setting. The 2000 ISMP Medication Safety Self-Assessment? surveyed medication safety practices in hospitals. Following that national survey, a series of tools — Pathways for Medication Safety? www.medpathways.info — were developed to help health care organizations take practical steps to improve medication safety practices. These tools have been referenced widely in trade and peer-reviewed literature and by organizations such as the National Patient Safety Foundation, the Joint Commission and the Institute for Healthcare Improvement.
Join HRET, MGMA and ISMP on Tuesday, Jan. 20, noon MT/1 p.m. CT/2 p.m. ET for a 60-minute Webinar providing a brief overview of the Pathways for Patient Safety tools. The presentation will conclude with a 15-minute question-and-answer session. Medical practice executives, administrators, physicians, clinical and nonclinical staff, and patient safety officers will benefit from this Webinar. Visit Pathways for Patient Safety for more information and to register.