Cincinnati Children's Blog

Patient Safety is Number One

Ask just about anyone at Cincinnati Children’s what is most important and you’re likely to get the same answer – safety!

There is nothing that we do that is more important than providing a safe environment for our patients and families. “Too much of a good thing” does not apply to safety in a hospital setting. You can never be too safe, especially when it comes to taking care of kids, and in some cases, medically complex kids.

In the last few years, we’ve been working in collaboration with the other children’s hospitals across Ohio. And, this week there is a particular focus on this group of hospitals and the tremendous progress we have made together since 2009, when the Ohio Children’s Hospitals Solutions for Patient Safety (OCHSPS) partnership was formed.  

Since the formation of the partnership, Ohio’s children’s hospitals have achieved a 60 percent reduction in surgical site infections in specific cardiac, neurosurgery and orthopedic procedures, and a 40 percent reduction in overall adverse drug events.  These efforts have saved more than 7,700 children from unnecessary harm and avoided $11.8 million in unnecessary health care costs.  And, since 50% of all patients in Ohio’s children’s hospitals receive Medicaid, this initiative has proven to be good not only for patients, but also for taxpayers.

The OCHSPS is rightfully celebrating these results this week as this model of safety in Ohio’s children’s hospitals is now being shared with CEOs from 25 children’s hospitals across the nation.  These CEOs are traveling to Columbus tomorrow to learn what the OCHSPS has done to achieve such outstanding results. 

This meeting is particularly exciting because the most important step that Ohio’s hospitals took as part of this OCHSPS partnership was to share their patient safety data across all of the participating hospitals, and to share the analysis of why a safety event took place.  This had never been done before.  Once the sharing started to happen, patient safety started to improve.  Why?  Because the hospitals learned from one another and found solutions from one another and applied what they learned to their own hospitals.  Of course, there is a lot more involved than just sharing information in order to get the kinds of results that Ohio’s children’s hospitals have gotten, but it was an important step.  And now, this week, Ohio’s children’s hospitals will be sharing what they learned with hospital leaders from around the country. 

The journey that we’re on to achieve better outcomes in patient safety is a never-ending one.  And, there is great excitement about the future based on what has happened in Ohio’s children’s hospitals over the past several years, and what is now spreading to children’s hospitals across the country. 

You can find additional information about the safety efforts at Cincinnati Children’s by clicking here.


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