Patient safety is described the absence of preventable harm to a patient during the process of health care and reduction of risk of unnecessary harm associated with health care to an acceptable minimum.
Improving patient safety in today’s hospitals worldwide also requires a systematic approach to combating healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) and antimicrobial resistance. The two go hand-in-hand.
The occurrence of HAIs such as central line-associated bloodstream infections, catheter-associated urinary tract infections, surgical site infections, hospital-acquired/ventilator associated pneumonia and C. difficile infection, continues to escalate at an alarming rate. These infections develop during the course of health care treatment and result in significant patient illnesses and deaths (morbidity and mortality); prolong the duration of hospital stays; and necessitate additional diagnostic and therapeutic interventions, which generate added costs to those already incurred by the patient’s underlying disease. HAIs are considered an undesirable outcome, and as many are preventable, they are considered an indicator of the quality of patient care, an adverse event, and a patient safety issue.