Healthcare organizations have been expanding their event reporting systems in order to respond more quickly and proactively to patient safety events. Ironically, this expansion may have reduced, rather than raised, risk managers’ ability to detect adverse effects that warrant a response by greatly increasing the amount of event reports and overwhelming hospital decision-makers. In addition, healthcare providers may view the increased reporting as a burden with few benefits.
In response to these concerns, ASHRM has awarded a 2013 Research Grant to George Mason University, Fairfax, Va., for its project entitled “Designing Highly Reliable Adverse Event Detection Systems.” This project aims to develop focused and easy-to-use practice guidelines for risk managers to evaluate event reports expeditiously. It will help risk managers identify serious safety events more reliably and enable them to predict subsequent claims, lawsuits and payments more precisely.
The project will allow investigators to detect two types of deficiencies in current adverse event reporting practices: 1. adverse events that were reported but never translated into claims or lawsuits, and 2. adverse events that did translate into claims or lawsuits but were not reported. The study sample will include all reported adverse events at all Inova Health System facilities that occurred between July 1, 2006 and June 30, 2011.
The investigators in the project are: Lorens A. Helmchen, PhD, associate professor at George Mason University; Maureen E. Burke, RN, MSN, CPHRM, director of risk management at Inova Health System; and Janusz Wojtusiak, PhD, assistant professor at George Mason University.
ASHRM awards research grants to projects that are relevant to its Mission and Vision. George Mason University’s project relates directly to ASHRM’s Data for Safety initiative, which emphasizes that “risk management professionals need the framework to mine their data, link their findings to organizational efforts to improve safety, and deploy their knowledge on behalf of the organization.”
Click Here to learn more about the ASHRM Research Grant.