OTTAWA, Oct. 21, 2013 /CNW/ - In its annual Canadian Health
Accreditation report "Safety in Canadian health care organizations: A focus on transitions in
care and Required Organizational Practices", Accreditation Canada turns the lens on care transitions - handovers at
shift changes, patient transfers, discharges and referrals - in
Canadian health care organizations, and finds opportunities for
Care transitions are critical points in the care system during which the
communication and/or transfer of information is vulnerable. A breakdown
in communication creates safety risks for patients and an associated
increase in costs to the health care system.
In 2012, 277 health care organizations across the country were assessed
by Accreditation Canada surveyors, including physicians, nurses,
pharmacists and therapists, using the rigorous Qmentum program. Qmentum
features standards and Required Organizational Practices (ROPs) -
evidence-based practices to mitigate risk - that provide organizations
with a roadmap for pursuing quality in health service delivery. By
examining transition points across all services and programs as
patients experience care, Qmentum supports the concept of patient care
as a shared responsibility between providers, patients and their
Results indicate that participating health care organizations achieved a
high level of compliance with standards related to coordinating
services across the continuum of care. However, there was a drop in
compliance with follow-up to evaluate the effectiveness of those
transitions, highlighting a key opportunity for improvement in the
health care system.
The data also reveals that while efforts to improve medication
reconciliation - a significant component in care transitions - are
increasing (compliance rates were up 11% to 71% at admission and up 12%
to 62% at transfer/discharge over the previous year), the relatively
low compliance rate remains an area that organizations should continue
to focus on.
Accreditation Canada is committed to improving quality and safety in
health services and continues to enhance the accreditation program. As
research and leading practice identify opportunities to improve care
transitions, that content is embedded in the standards and ROPs.
To learn more about this topic, please read the full Report.
Accreditation Canada is an independent, not-for-profit, organization that provides health
services organizations across Canada and internationally with a
rigorous and comprehensive accreditation process. It fosters ongoing
quality improvement based on evidence-based standards and external peer
review. Accredited by the International Society for Quality in Health
Care, Accreditation Canada has helped organizations strive for
excellence for 55 years.
SOURCE: Accreditation Canada
For further information:
Rhona Lahey, Director, Communications and Outreach, Accreditation Canada
(613) 738-3800, x. 408