10 - 13% of home care clients experience an adverse event on an annual basis

Video: First of its kind study examines safety in the home care sector, points to solutions and offers tools and resources to support changes.

Safety at Home, A Pan-Canadian Home Care Safety Study (CNW Group/Canadian Patient Safety Institute)

A typical residence, showing some of the challenges and hazards in providing care at home. (CNW Group/Canadian Patient Safety Institute)

First of its kind study examines safety in the home care sector, points to solutions and offers tools and resources to support changes.   

EDMONTON, June 26, 2013 /CNW/ - Over one million Canadians receive healthcare services in the home, and as the demand for home care increases with the aging population, there is a greater need to ensure safe delivery of home care in the home setting.  Today's release of Safety at Home: A Pan-Canadian Home Care Study is the first of its kind that examines adverse events in the home and makes recommendations on how to make home care safer.

In two papers to be published in BMC Health Services Research and BMJ Quality and Safety, Lead researchers, Dr. Diane Doran, University of Toronto, and Dr. Régis Blais, Université de Montréal, report the findings of their study which examined administrative databases and reviewed charts across the country.  This review showed the annual rate of adverse events for individuals receiving home care was 10 - 13 per cent. Extrapolated, this percentage would suggest that approximately 100,000 to 130,000 home care clients may experience an adverse event over a period of one year. Over half of these events were deemed preventable, the majority of which were falls, infections, or medication related incidents. Through the engagement of patients and providers in detailed analyses of adverse events, it was determined that harmful incidents in home care happen as a result of: care planning and delivery inconsistencies, lack of integration within the home care team and across sectors, poor standardization of processes, medication packaging, equipment, and risky decisions made by both clients and caregivers that put client's safety at risk.

"Providing care in the home setting poses unique safety challenges," said Nadine Henningsen, Executive Director, Canadian Home Care Association. "Home care professionals and family caregivers need to be equipped to effectively manage this responsibility.  Establishing a safe environment while respecting the rights of individuals to make choices within their own homes is challenging and requires sensitivity and flexibility.  This study will help advance this important conversation."

Lisa Droppo, Chief Care Innovations Officer, Ontario Association of Community Care Access Centres agrees: "With one in six seniors receiving home care across Canada, providing high quality health care at home is more important than ever. This thought provoking study, aimed at identifying ways to make home care safer for more people, will help patients and care providers work together to improve safety and reduce risks so people can stay independently at home, avoiding unnecessary visits to emergency departments and hospital admissions. "

Denise Clayton, a mother of an 11-year-old daughter whose complex healthcare journey has made her the recipient of home care for almost her entire life says, "I'm grateful for the support we have received from home care; but at the end of the day there are still challenges keeping my daughter safe in the home."  Denise praises the study, and looks forward to using the tools developed for caregivers.

The Safety at Home: A Pan-Canadian Home Care Study makes recommendations on how home care can be made safer. These include: assigning a case management "quarterback" from within the healthcare team; training, counseling, and assessing family caregivers; using a common chart and a transition checklist, and; building integrated, interdisciplinary teams that include clients and caregivers as key members.   

The Canadian Patient Safety Institute (CPSI), along with its partners The Change Foundation, Canadian Institutes of Health Research, and Canadian Foundation for Healthcare Improvement, funded the study to generate new knowledge and help improve the safety of home care clients.

Dr. Doran states that "The research team, in collaboration with CPSI and national partners, is developing tools and resources for clients, caregivers, home care organizations, and policy makers, with the aim of informing change in policy, practice, and behavior in the home care setting."  These tools will be developed and distributed over the next several months and can be found by visiting www.patientsafetyinstitute.ca."

Broadcast video to support this story is available to download at http://cnw.pathfireondemand.com/viewpackage.action?packageid=728

About Canadian Patient Safety Institute
The Canadian Patient Safety Institute (CPSI) is a not-for-profit organization that exists to raise awareness and facilitate implementation of ideas and best practices to achieve a transformation in patient safety.  Funded by Health Canada, CPSI reflects the desire to close the gap between the healthcare we have and the healthcare we deserve.

About The Change Foundation
The Change Foundation is an independent healthcare think tank, intent on changing the debate, the practice, and the healthcare experience in Ontario. We lead and leverage research, policy analysis, service redesign/quality improvement projects, and public engagement to achieve our strategic goal: to improve people's healthcare experience as they move in, out of, and across the healthcare system over time.

About Canadian Institutes of Health Research 
The Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) is the Government of Canada's health research investment agency. CIHR's mission is to create new scientific knowledge and to enable its translation into improved health, more effective health services and products, and a strengthened Canadian health care system. Composed of 13 Institutes, CIHR provides leadership and support to more than 14,100 health researchers and trainees across Canada.

About Canadian Foundation for Healthcare Improvement
The Canadian Foundation for Healthcare Improvement (CFHI) is dedicated to accelerating healthcare improvement and transformation for Canadians. We collaborate with governments, policy-makers and health system leaders to convert evidence and innovative practices into actionable policies, programs, tools and leadership development.

To access the Safety at Home: A Pan- Canadian Home Care Study, visit www.patientsafetyinstitute.ca

Join the conversation on Twitter: #safetyathome

Video with caption: "Video: First of its kind study examines safety in the home care sector, points to solutions and offers tools and resources to support changes.". Video available at: http://stream1.newswire.ca/cgi-bin/playback.cgi?file=20130626_C3251_VIDEO_EN_28500.mp4&posterurl=http://photos.newswire.ca/images/20130626_C3251_PHOTO_EN_28500.jpg&clientName=Canadian%20Patient%20Safety%20Institute&caption=Video%3A%20First%20of%20its%20kind%20study%20examines%20safety%20in%20the%20home%20care%20sector%2C%20points%20to%20solutions%20and%20offers%20tools%20and%20resources%20to%20support%20changes%2E&title=CANADIAN%20PATIENT%20SAFETY%20INSTITUTE%20%2D%2010%20%2D%2013%25%20of%20home%20care%20clients%20experience%20an%20adverse%20event%20on%20an%20annual%20basis%2E&headline=10%20%2D%2013%25%20of%20home%20care%20clients%20experience%20an%20adverse%20event%20on%20an%20annual%20basis%2E

Image with caption: "Safety at Home, A Pan-Canadian Home Care Safety Study (CNW Group/Canadian Patient Safety Institute)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20130626_C3251_PHOTO_EN_28501.jpg

Image with caption: "A typical residence, showing some of the challenges and hazards in providing care at home. (CNW Group/Canadian Patient Safety Institute)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20130626_C3251_PHOTO_EN_28502.jpg

PDF available at: http://stream1.newswire.ca/media/2013/06/26/20130626_C3251_DOC_EN_28503.pdf

SOURCE: Canadian Patient Safety Institute


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For media inquiries, please contact:

Canadian Patient Safety Institute;
Cecilia Bloxom, Director of Communications, (780) 700-8642 CBloxom@cpsi-icsp.ca