AHRQ Study Identifies Opportunities to Improve Support Programs for Clinicians Involved in Adverse Events
A majority of health care organizations have programs to provide emotional support to health care workers after adverse events, but features vary widely and there are substantial opportunities to improve services, according to a study by AHRQ. Clinicians involved in medical errors are often referred to as “second victims” because they can experience persistent negative effects such as guilt, embarrassment, self-doubt and fear that can have serious consequences on their well-being, work performance and patient safety. Researchers conducted an electronic survey of 575 members of the American Society for Healthcare Risk Management, including risk managers, executives, patient safety officers, directors of quality and compliance officers, to ascertain how they would characterize the structure and performance of their provider support program, if a program was available. Investigators found that while 74 percent of health care organizations maintain a support system, they vary widely and many lack important elements recommended by national standards. The study underscores the need for health care organizations to provide support systems for health care workers involved in adverse events. The study and abstract, “Risk Managers' Descriptions of Programs to Support Second Victims After Adverse Events,” were published online April 17 in the Journal of Healthcare Risk Management.
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J Healthc Risk Manag. 2015;34(4):30-40. doi: 10.1002/jhrm.21169.
Risk managers' descriptions of programs to support second victims after adverse events.
© 2015 American Society for Healthcare Risk Management of the American Hospital Association.
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