JCAHO expectations for 2006 patient safety goals

Organizations accredited by the Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations can see detailed implementation expectations for the 2006 National Patient Safety Goals on its web site. Two new goals that must be implemented by January 2006 include a standard approach for handoff communications and labeling of all medication containers.

To meet the new goal regarding handoff communications, implementation expectations include limiting interruptions during communications, presentation of up-to-date information, verification of information, and giving an opportunity for the receiver to review information and ask questions. The goal related to labeling of medication requires medications to be labeled on and off the sterile field and that labels include name and strength of medication or solution as well as the date and initials of the person preparing the label.

To see the entire list, go to www.jcaho.org. Under "Top Spots," choose "National Patient Safety Goals and FAQs," and scroll down to "2006 Implementation Expectations."