Patient safety is a discipline focussed on reducing safety incidents at work. QI incorporates patient safety into a larger framework designed to improve every aspect of care delivery – including experience of care, effectiveness of care, waste reduction and customer satisfaction. For both patient safety, and QI learning is a central concept. We define ‘learning’ in this context as the impartial analysis of accidents (medical, surgical, procedural or administrative) with the goal of improvement in mind. Learning uses a knowledge of the causes of human error and the application of this understanding to the system in question.

Patient safety culture describes a set of staff competencies that boost the success of patient safety and QI in practice. Patient safety culture is a potentially transformative discipline and one we have unique research insights into.

Some of the elements of a patient safety culture include: a knowledge of systems; open communication; effective leadership; an understanding of human error; and routine event reporting. These elements are also covered in the VETQITp1 and 2.

Investigating patient safety culture in an organisation can give us additional insights. These can be used as a springboard to further, targeted interventions: driving the positive impact of QI still further.

Would you like VetQIT to help you understand more about your patient safety culture? Do contact us about our patient safety culture survey service.

‘Complexity’ refers to the way that work is achieved in modern veterinary healthcare: veterinarians deliver medical and surgical solutions to a wide set of conditions, using an array of technology and a large human resource. ‘System’ refers to the entire veterinary clinic. In a significant event audit an accident, near-miss, or other unexpected occurrence is investigated to understand how the system and complexity contributed to it. A new protocol is then created so that service safety and quality are enhanced. This process is followed in many different industries to drive improvement for the benefit of service users, and the organisation. 

No – QI seeks to implement practical low-cost solutions to imperfect processes.

The solution can also be viewed as a valuable addition to the efficiency of the organisation – driving down the hidden costs of accidents.

Crucially, by inviting feedback from staff not only does the organisation benefit from unique insights, but those same employees feel more engaged in their role (‘agency’ at work has been shown to be a predictor of employee engagement.)

This is entirely understandable. Quality improvement can seem a daunting arena, however the fundamentals are actually quite simple, and our training solutions provide veterinary teams with many of the strategies that constitute QI. Do feel free to contact us for more information.

Want to Learn More?

We are committed to helping organisations in the veterinary industry benefit from Veterinary Quality Improvement.

Please contact VetQIT to discuss your requirements.