NYC public hospitals have launched a vigorous awareness campaign to advance its patient safety goals and highlight recent achievements and innovative clinical measures that have brought it well along the way to becoming one of the nation’s safest hospital systems by 2010.
Recent reports about hospital-acquired infections and preventable medical errors have increased public awareness of some of the dangers that can lurk in healthcare settings. HHC has already begun to directly address many of these, with measurable progress in a number of different areas.
"We have much to be proud of. By consistently applying best-practices, HHC hospitals have reduced serious hospital-acquired infections that can be life-threatening for fragile ICU patients. Rapid response teams have brought critical care resources to the bedside of patients who show signs of impending cardiac failure, reducing the number of cardiac arrests. We are preventing pressure ulcers and falls in high-risk nursing home patients, effectively identifying and protecting patients who may be at risk for suicide and practicing hand hygiene to reduce every type of infection," said HHC President Alan D. Aviles.
As a further statement of its commitment to patient safety, HHC voluntarily published data about the quality of its patient care, including rates of mortality and hospital-acquired infections. The information is available on the HHC website, nyc.gov/hhc.
The awareness campaign will primarily target HHC’s 39,000 healthcare workforce and the 1.3 million patients served every year and will focus on four key messages:
Make Safe Choices: Prevent Harm. HHC is committed to creating a just and fair culture in which employees feel comfortable reporting potential risks to patient safety. In an open atmosphere the organization can learn from mistakes and make the changes necessary to improve performance.
Prevent Infections: Good Health is in Your Hands. Effective hand hygiene is emphasized in HHC facilities all year long and National Handwashing Awareness Week, December 2 - 8, provides an opportunity to stress this key safety measure that the CDC has identified as the single most effective method for preventing infection.
Help Us Help You: Partnering for Safety. HHC is committed to educating and engaging patients and their families about ways they can help to ensure effective communication and guard their safety while under our care.
Check Meds Every Time: Name, Strength, Dose. HHC has achieved significant
reductions in medication errors through the effective use of electronic medication
ordering and administration systems. But there's much more patients and staff can do to further promote medication safety.