Four new safe practices should be utilized universally to lower the risk of harm in applicable healthcare settings, according the not-for-profit National Quality Forum.
NQF, a voluntary-consensus standard-setting organization based in Washington, D.C., added the four new practices on Friday, bringing its total number of approved safe practices to 30.
Anyone who can show that their interests are adversely affected by the NQF-endorsed recommendations can submit a written request for review and reconsideration of the new practices by May 17.
The new practices are:
- For designated, high-risk, elective surgical procedures or other specified care, patients should be clearly informed of the likely reduced risk of an adverse outcome at treatment facilities that have demonstrated superior outcomes and referred to such facilities in accordance with the patient's stated preference.
- All patients in general intensive care units (both adult and pediatric) should be managed by physicians having specific training and certification in critical care medicine.
- Pharmacists should actively participate in the medication-use process, including, at a minimum, being available for consultation with prescribers on medication ordering, interpretation and review of medication orders, preparation of medications, dispensing of medications, and administration and monitoring of medications.
- Ensure that care information, especially changes in orders and new diagnostic information, is transmitted in a timely and clearly understandable form to all of the patient's current healthcare providers/healthcare professionals who need that information to provide care.
The complete lists of NQF's safe practices and hospital quality measures are available on the NQF Web site.