2021 National Patient Safety Goals

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2021 National Patient Safety Goals 

Every calendar or fiscal year, our companies and our colleagues set group and personal goals with the purpose of being and performing better than we did the year before. 

But in order to improve, we have to identify issues or mistakes and ways that we can reduce them from taking place. In the medical field, organizations like the Joint Commission keep track of the most common issues and determine best practices as they come up. 

Every January the Joint Commission’s case puts together a yearly list of National Patient Safety Goals. Facilities that keep up with these issues and guidelines not only prove they’re worthy of Joint Commission accreditation, but they also show that they meet the best practice standards for quality patient care. 

What is the Joint Commission?

The Joint Commission is a national organization that accredits or certifies patient care facilities or services, like hospitals, nursing homes, home health agencies, or laboratory services. 

Prospective facilities or agencies undergo an initial review to decide whether or not they can receive accreditation or certification. After that, every year, the facilities go through regular inspections and report quarterly data to make sure they’re still meeting Joint Commission’s standards, which protects both staff and patients. 

What are National Patient Safety Goals?

The annual National Patient Safety Goals are based on what the organization has identified as the most common patient safety issues of the current fiscal year. The goals are categorized by the overall facility type, as patient needs vary among specialties. 

As a health care professional, be familiar with the patient safety goals that apply to your speciality type, even if the facility you work at isn’t accredited or certified by Joint Commission. These goals can help you identify areas where you might need to pay closer attention to make sure that patients are kept safe and given the best care they need.

Listed below are the different patient care centers that the patient safety goals cover along with links to where you can download the full information to learn about what interventions you can use to meet this year’s goals. 

Ambulatory Health Care

The patient safety goals for ambulatory health care include the following:

  • Identifying patients correctly
  • Using medicines safely
  • Preventing infection
  • Preventing mistakes in surgery

Behavioral Health Care

These are the annual goals for behavioral health care:

  • Identifying individuals correctly
  • Using medications safely
  • Preventing infection
  • Identifying individuals served safety risks

Critical Access Hospital

For critical access hospitals, here are this year’s national patient safety goals:

  • Identifying patients correctly
  • Improving staff communication
  • Using medicines safely
  • Using alarms safely
  • Preventing infection
  • Identifying patient safety risks
  • Preventing mistakes in surgery

Home Care

The annual patient safety goals for home care services include:

  • Identifying patients correctly
  • Using medications safely
  • Preventing infection
  • Preventing patients from falling
  • Identifying patient safety risks

Hospital

Included safety goals for hospitals are the following:

  • Identifying patients correctly
  • Improving staff communication
  • Using medications safely
  • Using alarms safely
  • Preventing infection
  • Identifying patient safety risks
  • Preventing mistakes in surgery

Laboratory

For laboratories, the Joint Commission describes how to tackle the following patient safety goals:

  • Identifying patients correctly
  • Improving staff communication
  • Preventing infection

Nursing Care Center

If you work in a nursing care center, here are the patient safety goals for 2020:

  • Identifying patients correctly
  • Using medications safely
  • Preventing infection
  • Preventing residents from falling
  • Preventing bedsores

Office-Based Surgery

For those working in office-based surgery centers, here are the patient safety goals for your facility:

  • Identifying patients correctly
  • Using medications safely
  • Preventing infection
  • Preventing mistakes in surgery
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