Philips survey shows incomplete data may threaten patient safety

Philips survey shows incomplete data may threaten patient safety

The FINANCIAL -- Royal Philips on October 26 announced survey results commissioned by Philips and Regina Corso Consulting that revealed patient safety is still a top concern for physician and nurse leaders in the United States (U.S.), and incomplete data is tightly-linked with this worry.

The survey, which included responses from 251 physician and nurse leaders around the U.S., showed that data is playing an increasingly important role in patient safety, and 74 percent of physician and nurse leaders say they believe lack of patient data during in-hospital transport is a risk to patients.

The World Health Organization (WHO) reports that medical errors are the third leading cause of death in the U.S., with approximately one in 10 hospitalized patients experiencing harm due to such errors, with at least 50 percent preventability1. Patient safety remains a priority for key healthcare stakeholders, and of those surveyed, almost three-quarters of physician leaders (73 percent) and four in five nurse leaders (79 percent) said patient safety keeps them up at night. An important part of maintaining patient safety is ensuring a complete record of patient monitoring data, however, when patients are transferred from one department to another, clinicians often struggle with incomplete data records due to multiple systems operating independently. In this survey, Philips took a closer look at how data plays a role in patient safety.

Incomplete patient data viewed as a threat

Selected from a list of six options in the survey, the top three threats to patient safety between physician and nurse leaders collectively were inconsistent care delivery, having incomplete data on patients and alarm fatigue.

According to the survey, three-quarters (74 percent) of both physician and nurse leaders say patient safety is at risk when exchanging information about patients between departments. Seven in 10 of both groups say lack of complete data on patients is a cause of clinical inefficiencies, and physician and nurse leaders agree that better access to critical patient data is beneficial to clinician response (91 percent and 96 percent).

“While patient safety remains the top priority for healthcare professionals, patient care can be hindered by not having a complete picture of each patient’s monitoring data,” said Felix Baader, Business Leader, Patient Monitoring at Philips. “A seamless record of a patient’s health history can support clinicians in the complex and fast-moving hospital environment. Recent advancements in technology have gotten us closer as an industry to ensuring that clinicians are equipped with the information they need, when they need it from admission to discharge, but it’s up to healthcare leaders worldwide to work together and make this a reality.”

Additional key findings from the survey impacting patient safety include:

Inconsistent care and alarm fatigue: 78 percent of physician leaders say incomplete data on patients is the biggest threat to patients, while nurse leaders think alarm fatigue is the biggest threat (76 percent). However, both groups agree that inconsistent care delivery is a top concern (78 percent and 75 percent).
Easing data-related patient safety concerns: Nine in 10 physician leaders and almost all nurse leaders say patient monitoring must be consistent to move healthcare forward (91 percent and 97 percent), and almost nine in 10 physician leaders (87 percent) and almost all nurse leaders (97 percent) say having a gap-free patient monitoring data record is essential for good patient care.