Wednesday, June 06, 2012

Is this the good news or the bad news?

PharmPro reports: 

Wrong-site surgery and falls prevention programs within Pennsylvania healthcare facilities appear to be working, with significant declines in wrong-site surgeries and harmful falls, according to the June Pennsylvania Patient Safety Advisory. The Authority's program to prevent wrong-site surgery began in December 2007 after an article revealed that Pennsylvania healthcare facilities were submitting approximately two-and-a-half wrong-site surgery reports per week.

Since the prevention program began, wrong-site surgeries in Pennsylvania have decreased by 37 percent from an average of 19 reports per quarter to an average of 12 reports per quarter. Adjusting for the increase in procedure volume over the past several years, the decline is more pronounced, as the rate of wrong-site surgery has dropped by 40 percent.

Is this the definition of "working?"  One per week?  Five years later?  I guess it is good news if you were one of the cases that went well.

(Thanks to William A. Hyman, Professor Emeritus in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Texas A&M University, for pointing out this story.  Here's the actual report.)

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