Patient safety is more than making sure a patient is safe, while this is a main concern, patient safety methods go far behind just safety. It starts with the right design methods, establishes goals that need to be followed and how implementing these goals and better workflows can help establish an even safer care model with patient centered care in mind the entire time.
When a hospital is built and designed, it needs to be able to work efficiently for everyone who will inhabit this building. Think about it, that includes family, friends, children patients, adult patients, physicians, specialists, nurses and healthcare staff.
Evidence based design is simply looking at something and thinking beyond the limitations that might happen. The design notion takes old methods of research and past projects, examines the limitations that were set in place and from there develops a new design and better space for everyone.
This is why evidence based design is so important in the healthcare field and sets the standards for patient safety goals. Without the proper design methods set in place from the beginning of the project, there are a number of issues that can occur from lack of patient centered care to less efficient workflows for the healthcare professionals and staff members.
The main guidelines that are set in place for nurses to follow and improve upon include: making sure all patients are safe, all workflows are effective, the main concern is patient centered care and everything is handled in a timely manner.
Once these goals are established, a nurse can improve upon them in several different ways from communication to optimizing workflows.
- Better communication. As a nurse, it’s important to establish trust with your patient. A patient who feels more comfortable will be more willing to talk about their medical history and be more open and honest. Let the patient know you’re there for them and they can trust you with their health.
- Stop the spread of HAIs. HAIs are the number one preventable cause of death for patients in hospitals each year. Nurses can prevent the spread of these infections with proper hand washing, cleaning the patient’s skin properly and making sure all lines are stored and taken out correctly.
- Identify patients correctly. It’s important to make sure you know your patient’s name, their medical history and know who they are. It can be hard to remember everyone, but this helps with medication errors, wrong diagnosis and other life threatening medical problems.
- Help with patient disruption. Patient disruption occurs when the patient’s life changes while they’re in the hospital and again when they leave the hospital. A patient who is staying long term has a normal routine and now that routine is changing drastically; along with this, the patient might have to make some serious life changes outside of the hospital. A new diet, exercise routines, new medication and more. It’s important to guide the patient into the right direction and help navigate their day to day life and find how their new lifestyle already fits into their current one.
- Share all quality measures to improve patient safety. This is something important that all nurses should be helping to provide more research and information for better quality measures and standards. Since the same patient safety goals are set in place in all hospitals, it’s important to understand which ones are working best and in what ways have they been improved upon to help patients.
- Provide a healthy, safe environment. It’s important for all nurses to provide a safe and healthy place for their patient. An environment where the patient can openly talk to a nurse, feel comfortable, safe and knows the nurse has their best interest in mind.
- Follow EBD principles. As a nurse, it’s important to set in place decentralized nurse stations that allow for better observation of patients which will reduce the amount of falls and injuries that occur during a shift. This will continue to increase patient centered care models in place that help with patient safety goals.
These are some day-to-day ways nurses can improve upon patient safety and keep patient centered care at the forefront of patient care.
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