Cookies Notification

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Find out more.

Research Article

‘Global Trigger Tool’ Shows That Adverse Events In Hospitals May Be Ten Times Greater Than Previously Measured

  1. David C. Classen ( [email protected] ) is an associate professor of medicine at the University of Utah, in Salt Lake City.
  2. Roger Resar is a senior fellow at the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
  3. Frances Griffin is a faculty member at the Institute for Healthcare Improvement.
  4. Frank Federico is an executive director at the Institute for Healthcare Improvement.
  5. Terri Frankel is a director at the Institute for Healthcare Improvement.
  6. Nancy Kimmel is director of quality and safety at the Missouri Baptist Medical Center, in St. Louis.
  7. John C. Whittington is a senior fellow at the Institute for Healthcare Improvement.
  8. Allan Frankel is an associate professor at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, in Boston, Massachusetts.
  9. Andrew Seger is an assistant professor at Brigham and Women’s Hospital.
  10. Brent C. James is chief quality officer at Intermountain Healthcare, in Salt Lake City, Utah.
PUBLISHED:No Accesshttps://doi.org/10.1377/hlthaff.2011.0190

Identification and measurement of adverse medical events is central to patient safety, forming a foundation for accountability, prioritizing problems to work on, generating ideas for safer care, and testing which interventions work. We compared three methods to detect adverse events in hospitalized patients, using the same patient sample set from three leading hospitals. We found that the adverse event detection methods commonly used to track patient safety in the United States today—voluntary reporting and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality’s Patient Safety Indicators—fared very poorly compared to other methods and missed 90 percent of the adverse events. The Institute for Healthcare Improvement’s Global Trigger Tool found at least ten times more confirmed, serious events than these other methods. Overall, adverse events occurred in one-third of hospital admissions. Reliance on voluntary reporting and the Patient Safety Indicators could produce misleading conclusions about the current safety of care in the US health care system and misdirect efforts to improve patient safety.

Loading Comments...