In partnership with the American Hospital Association, the Institute for Safe Medication Practices last week sent a self-assessment tool to hospitals so they can identify and eliminate medication errors. The institute is asking hospitals that receive the 30-page document, which contains checklists and guidelines, to share their self-assessment findings for its confidential database. The AHA and the Huntingdon Valley, Pa.-based institute formed a partnership in the wake of last year's Institute of Medicine report on medical errors.
The chief executives of five healthcare systems and alliances, along with pharmaceutical and insurance executives, last week formed a task force to reduce medical errors. Coordinated by the Washington-based Healthcare Leadership Council, the 11-member medical-errors task force will develop a series of patient-safety initiatives by year-end. Its first target will be reducing medication errors, said Richard Norling, the task force's chairman and chief executive officer of the Premier hospital alliance.
To harmonize medical school curriculums with the growing medical quality movement, the Association of American Medical Colleges, Washington, has created three expert panels to set up new guidelines for medical school deans and faculties. The Medical School Objective Project includes panels on healthcare quality, clinical research and basic science. The quality panel will decide what experiences medical students should have to understand quality of care. The clinical research panel will study how practitioners should learn to integrate clinical research results with patient-care activities. The basic science panel will examine how medical students should learn molecular and cellular biology in their undergraduate years.