Patient safety a priority for NHS Scotland

Categories: Care.

The list of ‘essential actions’, which was launched yesterday by Health Secretary Alex Neil at a conference on the Scottish Patient Safety Programme, sets out ten of the most successful elements of the programme which have been implemented widely across the NHS.

The aim is now to ensure that all these essential actions are implemented by every member of staff, for every patient receiving hospital care.

The list includes a number of areas where good practice should be followed, such as hand washing and communication in the ward or theatre, as well as a number of evidence-based ‘bundles’ of care which are collections of interventions and checks to improve both quality and safety of care.

Each item on the list is evidence based and has been developed and refined over time in collaboration between the Scottish Government, Healthcare Improvement Scotland’s Scottish Patient Safety Programme and clinicians across NHS Scotland.

Susan Went, who manages the Scottish Patient Safety Programme, said: “We are now raising the bar on patient safety in Scotland. As a result of the first five years work to embed safety within our acute hospitals, the 10 essentials are the actions that have been shown to work most consistently and comprehensively. Based upon this information, we are confident to recommend to the Scottish Government that these actions be moved from testing and become patient safety ‘must dos’ for NHS Scotland. 

“Evidence from the Scottish Patient Safety Programme shows that these actions work and patients across Scotland can now benefit from the work that we’ve carried out.”

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