Risk Management Tools & Resources


Improving Hand Hygiene in Dental Practices to Promote Safety and Instill Confidence

Practicing diligent hand hygiene is a well-known principle of patient and healthcare worker safety and a standard precaution for infection prevention and control in healthcare organizations of all types and sizes, including dental practices. In fact, hand hygiene often is recognized as the single most important step that dental providers and staff can take to prevent the spread of infections.1

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Is Your Culture of Safety Psychologically Safe?

The concept of psychological safety is increasingly viewed as a critical component of an overall culture of safety in healthcare. Leaders and other individuals within healthcare organizations have seen the value of psychological safety in promoting an environment of caring and well-being, improving patient outcomes, preventing staff burnout, cultivating staff resilience, and supporting staff recruitment and retention. Further, psychological safety plays a pivotal role in diversity, inclusion, and belonging1 — key issues that have become more pronounced in recent years as the focus on various inequities has sharpened.

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Case Study: Patient's Health Deteriorates in the Absence of Proper Pressure Injury Care

The patient was a male in his mid-eighties who had a history of prostate and bladder cancer leading to bone metastasis. Following a hospital stay, he was transferred to a long-term care/rehabilitation (LTC/rehab) facility. When the patient arrived at the facility, the admissions nurse documented that he had a Stage 4 sacral pressure injury.

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Providing Culturally Competent Care for LGBT+ Patients

Diversity is a cornerstone of American culture that is reflected in our national institutions and endeavors, including healthcare. Healthcare providers and staff members interact on a daily basis with people of varying backgrounds and experiences. Although patient populations might differ based on geographic location or type of facility, the need for culturally competent care never diminishes.

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Tips for Amending Electronic Health Records

Altering documentation in patient records can have serious consequences, including allegations of fraud and professional misconduct — and it also can make malpractice claims difficult to defend. Yet, mistakes happen and situations undoubtedly will occur that require healthcare providers to make corrections, addendums, or late entries in patient records.

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The Role of Documentation in Diagnosis-Related Malpractice Cases

Allegations associated with diagnostic errors — i.e., wrong diagnoses, delayed diagnoses, and missed diagnoses — are a top cause of malpractice lawsuits. A number of risk factors can lead to diagnostic errors, including issues related to documentation of clinical care.

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Case Study: Oversight in Electronic Health Record Causes a Delay in Ovarian Cancer Diagnosis

Electronic health records (EHRs) have transformed the ways in which healthcare providers work and communicate. These systems have been both extolled and criticized over the years as their use in hospitals, healthcare practices, and other healthcare facilities has become ubiquitous.

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Why Documentation Is a Crucial Aspect of Disclosing an Unanticipated Outcome

Documentation is paramount in healthcare delivery because it memorializes patient care, facilitates communication among caregivers, forms the basis for coding and billing, provides data pertinent to quality improvement, and may provide information that is critical to the defense of a legal action. Documentation also serves a crucial role in the disclosure of unanticipated outcomes, such as medical errors, medical mismanagement, system errors, or other unforeseen situations that lead to patient harm.

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