Things We Read and Loved: Achieving High Reliability in Healthcare

May 8, 2018 Samantha Relich

As healthcare has embraced the teachings of high reliability organizations, its principles have become mainstays in efforts to monitor and drive ideal outcomes.

If you’re interested in the basics of an HRO – or are working to become one, our video with Dr. Tom Peterson covers most of the basics you need to embark on an HRO journey.

To recap, a very high level, the five principles of HROs include:

  1. Preoccupation with failure
  2. Reluctance to simplify
  3. Sensitivity to operations
  4. Commitment to resiliency
  5. Deference to expertise

This month we’ve been learning a lot about how embodying any one of these principles can have an impact on healthcare. 

Medical Office Survey on Patient Safety Culture: 2018 User Database Report

AHRQ’s 2018 report highlights how critical a culture of safety is to healthcare organizations on an HRO journey. The report highlights strengths and potential areas for improvement – among a wealth of other information. This year’s strengths? Teamwork within units and patient care tracking/follow-up. Read the full report for all the details.

Leadership rounds to reduce health care-associated infections

Rounding is a very common tactic used by HROs. Its use comes with a variety of benefits including: increasing awareness, promoting commitment to strategies and processes and promoting purposeful communication (all of which align with the HRO principle of sensitivity to operations).

The best part? There’s not limit to how and where it can be used. In this article in the American Journal of Infection Control highlights how leadership rounding can be used to reduce healthcare associated infections (HAIs). Read the full article for more information on the link between leadership, learning climate and creating psychological safety.

To excel as a care team, members must know their roles

Deference to expertise is another principle of HROs and it has a significant role to play in improving patient care and the success of healthcare processes. According to a blog by the American Medical Association, that also means understanding that the more traditional, siloed approach of storing information isn’t always conducive to ideal outcomes. Instead, information-sharing and interoperability are crucial.

The CMS’ decision to rename meaningful to "promoting interoperability" is also a testament to how significant information sharing is in the future of healthcare. In that sense, interoperability goes beyond the walls of a healthcare organization. One of the key elements of the CMS' announcement is a new requirement to have patient's electronic health records available on the day they leave the hospital, no later than 2019. 

Stay in the know about the latest industry trends and innovative uses of RL6 with the RL webinar series. 

 

About the Author

Samantha is part of the marketing team at RL and is passionate about sharing healthcare stories. When she's not typing away, you can find her as far from the city as possible with a book and a kayak.

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