“Through the survey we found a lot of information about the challenges facing today’s nurses including workloads, too many patients, time pressure, less than ideal nurse ratios and fatigue, but what we were also able to identify is some potential areas for improvement, with one significant area being technology to report errors,” said Reilly. “This survey is only one small part of the picture, and our efforts are one small part of a solution that involves participation from the individual hospital on up to national programs like the Partnership for Patients. GE and ANA are committed to helping healthcare systems tackle some of their toughest challenges, including addressing patient safety concerns through innovative technologies, partnerships and cultural education.”

Culture

According to the survey, nurses see themselves as having by far the most responsibility for patient safety (90%), over physicians (69%) or patient safety officers (60%). Nearly all (95%) nurses believe that it is extremely or very important that hospital leadership make patient safety a priority in creating an effective patient safety culture. The vast majority of nurses (85%) agree that their hospital has a patient safety culture, and 94% report that their hospitals have programs in place that promote patient safety.

Having a culture where nurses are not penalized for reporting errors or near misses is seen as important by 90% of nurses. However, 59% agree that nurses often hold back in reporting patient errors in fear of punishment [67% US, 62% UK, 49% China], and 62% agree that nurses often hold back in reporting near misses for that reason [69% US, 65% UK, 54% China].

However, it is questionable if these programs are meeting their objectives; only 41% of nurses describe the hospital they work in as “safe” and fewer than 6 in 10 (57%) believe the patient safety programs in their hospital are effective, resulting in a great opportunity for improvement in patient safety procedures.

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