Patient safety organizations ECRI and the Institute for Safe Medication Practices have combined their databases on safety events used by healthcare organizations to improve care quality.
The new patient safety organization, called ECRI and the Institute for Safe Medication Practices PSO, comes about eight months after the groups announced they had merged. The Institute for Safe Medication Practices is now wholly owned by ECRI but retains its mission and own business operations.
"Together, ECRI and (the Institute for Safe Medication Practices) bring up-to-date information and real-time guidance to assure healthcare leaders that they're making the best decisions to keep patients, long-term-care residents and staff safe," Dr. Marcus Schabacker, CEO of ECRI, said in a statement.
Both ECRI and the Institute for Safe Medication Practices have operated as federally designated patient safety organizations, or PSOs, since the launch of the program in 2008. PSOs were established by Congress under the Patient Safety and Quality Improvement Act of 2005 and are intended to enable healthcare organizations to share confidentially quality information and data that is used to improve patient care.
About 1,800 healthcare organizations including ambulatory-care sites and health systems participate in ECRI's PSO. ECRI has analyzed more than 3.5 million events overall including 10,000 events related to COVID-19.
The PSO for the Institute for Safe Medication Practices gathers information from pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, nurses and physicians about medication errors. The institute also has a separate reporting program that can be used by clinicians and providers in the field that receives about 2,000 reports annually.
The combination of the two PSOs will lead to more insights about medication errors in healthcare, according to Michael Cohen, founder and president of the Institute for Safe Medication Practices.
"Our total focus is medication safety, that is what we are bringing to the table," he said.