Willapa Harbor Hospital is adopting the National Patient Safety Goals into the daily practice of how to deliver healthcare and reduce the possibility of medical errors.
Patient safety has always been a priority at the hospital, and the formal adoption of the National Patient Safety Goals (NPSG) will only serve to decrease the already low likelihood of error. The NPSG outlines seven categories of goals which include patient identification, staff communication, medicines, alarms, infection, safety risks, and surgical procedures. WHH staff will be focusing on each category individually until all goals have been met. Today, we want to tell you about changes you may notice in terms of Patient Identification.
One of the benefits of living in our small community is that most often when receiving care at our hospital, you are usually cared for by people you know personally. It adds warmth, a personal touch and a true sense of caring. The staff knows your face, your medical history, and may even be related to you. None of this will be changing.
The changes that you will see are the result of upgrades to the procedural rules of patient identification. These changes were made to protect your safety from medical errors while in the hospital. What does this look like to you?
You will receive a patient identification bracelet every time you register at the hospital. Picture ID will be requested to verify your identity. This is true even if you are only here to have lab work, a radiology exam, or an EKG.
You will be asked to state your name and birth date over and over again. Please be patient with the repetitive nature of this questioning. Staff members are required to ask you to state this information before giving any medications, treatments, procedures or meals to assure that the correct treatment is matched with the correct patient.
Alternative procedures are in place for those who are unable to verbally participate in the identification process.
When receiving medications, your identification bracelet will be electronically scanned for barcode identification.
Your participation in our efforts to assure your proper identification will be greatly appreciated. If you have questions, comments on this article, suggestions or quality concerns, please feel free to call me, Karen Farrell, Director of Quality Improvement/Risk Management at 875-4553.