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Indian J Crit Care Med. 2008 Apr;12(2):62-6. doi: 10.4103/0972-5229.42559.

Patient safety: Needs and initiatives.

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Department of Intensive Care Medicine, University of Birmingham, UK.


Patient safety has become a major defining issue for healthcare at the beginning of the 21(st) century. Viewed from the perspective of reliability of delivery of best practice, healthcare systems demonstrate a degree of imperfection which would not be tolerated in industry. In part, this is because of uncertainty about what constitutes best practice, combined with complex interventions in complex systems. The acutely ill patient is particularly challenging, and as the majority of admissions to hospitals are emergencies, it makes sense to focus on this group as a coherent entity. Changing clinical behavior is central to improving safety, and this requires a systems-wide approach integrating care throughout patient journey, combined with incorporating reliability training in life-long learning.


Patient safety; best practice; medical errors; quality; teamwork

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