Joint Commission 2005 National Patient Safety Goals

The following new goals and/or requirements apply to hospital-based, freestanding, and office-based same-day surgery programs. The new goals or requirements are indicated in bold.

• Goal: Improve the accuracy of patient identification.

Measure, assess and, if appropriate, take action to improve the timeliness of reporting, and the timeliness of receipt by the responsible licensed caregiver, of critical test results and values.

• Goal: Improve safety of using medications.

Identify and, at a minimum, annually review a list of look-alike/sound-alike drugs used in the organization, and take action to prevent errors involving the interchange of these drugs.

• Goal: Accurately and completely reconcile medications across the continuum of care.

During 2005, for full implementation by January 2006, develop a process for obtaining and documenting a complete list of the patient’s current medications upon the patient’s entry to the organization and with the involvement of the patient. This process includes a comparison of the medications the organization provides to those on the list.

A complete list of the patient’s medications is communicated to the next provider of service when it refers or transfers a patient to another setting, service, practitioner, or level of care within or outside the organization.

This goal applies only to ambulatory or office-based same-day surgery programs:

• Goal: Reduce the risk of surgical fires.

Educate staff, including operating licensed independent practitioners and anesthesia providers, on how to control heat sources and manage fuels, and establish guidelines to minimize oxygen concentration under drapes.

This goal applies only to same-day surgery programs surveyed under the hospital accreditation standards manual:

• Goal: Reduce the risk of patient harm resulting from falls.

Assess and periodically reassess each patient’s risk for falling, including the potential risk associated with the patient’s medication regimen, and take action to address any identified risks.

Source: Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations, Oakbrook Terrace, IL.