The WHO has declared September 17, 2019, as the World Patient Safety Day. The 72nd World Health Assembly stated this idea in May 2017. On this very first World Patient Safety Day, WHO has targeted patient safety as a global health priority. And it has urged the patients, policy workers, healthcare industry, and healthcare providers to “Speak up for Patient Safety!”.
Unsafe health care leads to the death of 5 patients per minute
On this World Patient Safety Day, cities all over the world have lightened up monuments in orange color. And showed their commitment to the safety of the patients. Every year, millions of patients get harmed due to unsafe health care.
The negligence in health care has resulted in nearly 2.6 million death annually. While this figure is only representing the number of deaths in low and middle-income countries. Many of these deaths can be avoided.
Any harm to the patient has its personal, social, and economic impacts. It can lead to the loss of trillions of US dollars all over the world. The WHO, World Health Organization, has focused on the issue of patient safety at a global level.
And also, by coordination with patients WHO is launching a campaign on the very first World Patient Safety Day. The aim of this campaign is that no one should get harmed while receiving any kind of health care. On the contrary, at least 5 patients die per minute due to the provision of unsafe care.
So, there is a need for a patient safety culture. That can promote corporation with patients, learning from errors, and encourage reporting. It can also provide a blame-free environment. That will train and empower the health workers to reduce errors.
Patient harm during health care is completely unacceptable
Four among every ten patients get hurt during the provision of primary and ambulatory health care. While 80% of the harms in these settings are avoidable. Besides this, the most devastating errors are related to prescription, diagnosis, and the use of medication.
Only the errors in medication can cost nearly 42 billion US dollars annually. On the other hand, unsafe surgical care methods can lead to complications in about 25% of patients. That results in 1 million annual deaths during or immediately after surgery.
During health care, any harm to the patient is unacceptable. And to reduce this harm, the WHO has called for urgent action by partners and countries around the world.
Patient safety and quality of care are vital for the delivery of effective health services and the achievement of universal health coverage. Investment in improving the safety of patients can avoid this economic loss. And also lead to notable financial savings.
It is noteworthy that the cost of prevention is quite lower than the cost of treatment due to patient harm. So. focusing on safety improvement, in the U.S. alone, has led to savings of about 28 billion US dollars.
Whereas this financial saving was observed in Medicare hospitals from 2010 to 2015. Also, the greater involvement of the patient is the key to safer care. Where engaging patients can lower the burden of harm by 15%. And save billions of dollars each year.