Quality Relationship in Healthcare and the Role of a Hospital Risk Manager

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905 words
University of California, Santa Barbara
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We know that a hospital risk management officer is liable for ensuring that the clinical methods are handled according to the regulations and guidelines. He/she manages and performs quality assurance activities in a hospital. He must be able to generate commitment and interest without burdening administrative and clinical staff with an exercise they don't understand. Hospital accreditation has been described as an external peer assessment and self-assessment process used by health care organizations to rigorously evaluate their level of performance. Clinicians have enjoyed an exceptional deal of autonomy in their practices. Time, however, has ripped away much of the veil of professional character. Clinicians now see accreditation measures as a framework by which organizational processes will be enhanced, and their patients will receive better attention. Administrators and physicians now must face the challenge of practicing dynamic and comprehensive systems of quality assurance and learn to evade the traps that hinder implementation of such systems. Quality assurance is a very easy process that deals with finding difficulties and fixing them. A general meaning of quality health care would be, accredited hospitals offer a higher degree of care to their patients. Accreditation also gives a competitive advantage in the healthcare sector and strengthens community trust in the quality and safety of treatment, care, and services. Overall it improves risk reduction and risk management and helps strengthen and organize patient safety efforts and builds a culture of patient safety (Scully, 2009).

Reporting errors are crucial to error prevention. Errors that happen show numerous problems in the system whether it harms the patient or not. Changes must be made on the more-common and underlying obstacles most frequently linked with near misses to evade future mistakes that can cause harm to the patients. Systems problems can be identified through reports of errors that hurt patients, mistakes that happen but do not cause injury to the patient, and errors that could have caused harm but were alleviated in some way before they ever reached the patient. Reporting sets up a means so that near misses and errors can be reported to key stakeholders. Once data are gathered, health care agencies can then assess causes and design methods to reduce the risk of mistakes. Ethical frameworks work when health care blunders are done. Nurses and Physicians and other health care providers have an ethical and legal responsibility to report benefits, risks, and alternative treatments through informed consent mandates. Legal vulnerability and self-interest after errors are done must be mitigated by the principle of fidelity (Scully, 2009).

Hospital quality and safety managers regularly conduct a parallel investigation. They strive to create an orderly process improvement initiative that aims the initial causes of the situation. Their goals have not necessarily included concerns over financial or litigation loss. Rather, their main intention has been to improve the quality of patient care. Citing sound concerns, risk managers go to deep lengths to protect information. They typically conduct a thorough investigation to estimate the liability exposure to the organization and help avoid any future loss that may occur. Because these cases involve patient harm, risk managers are acknowledging that negligence claims are likely to emerge from these events, and they are seeing the sentinel event policy as a chance for initial identification of risk. Healthcare agencies are scrambling to establish their sentinel event procedures and policies, but there are concerns over the confidentiality and privilege protection that are resulting from those proceedings.

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), the Joint Commission, the National Quality Forum, and many other national bodies recommend the use of reliable and valid measures to protect patient safety to improve health care. In health care, continuous quality improvement (CQI) is used correspondently with TQM. CQI has been used as a way of developing clinical exercise and is based on the principle that there is a chance for growth in every process and on every occasion. Many hospital risk managers in quality assurance programs concentrate on subjects identified by accreditation or regulatory organizations, such as reviewing the work of oversight committees, checking documentation, and studying credentialing processes. Safety policies in health care agencies attempt to limit harm to patients, their friends and families, contract-service workers, healthcare professionals, volunteers, and the many other individuals whose actions bring them into a health care environment (Cohen, 1990).

Organizations should include proper design principles in their work setting. For example, simplification and standardization are two major human principles that are broadly used in safe industries and widely overlooked in health care. Follow evidence-based policies for hospital design to enhance patient safety and quality. Stop patient slips by providing well-designed patient bathrooms and rooms and building decentralized nurses' locations that allow simple access to patients. To possibly prevent future blunders such as the spread of infection in hospitals, proper measures must be implemented such as fixing air filtration systems and providing single bedrooms for patients.

A sentinel Policy to assist hospitals that endure severe adverse situations was approved by the joint commission to enhance safety and learn from those sentinel events. Like any other program, a significant safety program should involve defined program objectives and plans, senior-level leadership, front-line personnel, and should be controlled by regular progress reports to the executive committee and board of directors.



Cohen, T. (1990). Human Resources and Quality Assurance. Hospital Topics, 68(2), 35-38. doi:10.1080/00185868.1990.9948432

Scully, P. (2009). Checklist shows the role of a hospital risk manager. Perspectives in Healthcare Risk Management, 5(1), 7-8. doi:10.1002/jhrm.5600050110


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