ECRI Blog

Leadership Means Never Going It Alone

As president and CEO of the nation’s largest patient safety organization, I had the privilege of leading ECRI through a dangerous time for humanity. Overnight, the insidious COVID-19 virus sent our 500-plus employees home to work remotely, but we never missed a beat. We were resilient; and we focused on searching for answers that would mean the difference between life and death for millions of people infected with SARS-CoV-2.

When the Philadelphia Business Journal honored me as a Healthcare Leader for 2021, I was humbled and grateful, but I knew the award belonged to and was representative of the extraordinary work that ECRI’s employees undertook to provide assurance to our global healthcare constituents and to make patients and healthcare providers safer in a time of crisis.

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Topics: Patient Safety, Diversity and Inclusion, COVID-19, Vaccine Acceptance, ECRI, Evidence-based decision making, Value-based care, Leadership, Healthcare Leader, Pandemic Leadership, Vaccines

Increase in HAIs Attributed to COVID-19 Burden on Providers

Posted by Edward Nuber, Director of Marketing, ECRI on Oct 21, 2021
The first rule of healthcare is, “Do no harm.” Healthcare providers live by that oath. But sometimes, despite providers’ best efforts, patients obtain hospital acquired infections (HAIs) while receiving care.

In recent years, efforts to reduce HAIs have been successful, with annual cases dropping more and more each year. However, in 2020, there was an increase in HAIs, causing healthcare leaders to examine the reasons behind this spike and if the increase was related to the COVID-19 pandemic and the burden it placed on healthcare facilities and staff.

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Topics: Risk Management, Health Devices, Patient Safety, COVID-19, Physician Engagement

Inadequate Maternal Health Care Results in 300,000 Preventable Deaths Annually

Posted by Edward Nuber, Director of Marketing, ECRI on Sep 27, 2021

Giving birth is one of the most natural parts of life. But for too many women, giving birth can be dangerous, and lead to infections, illness, and even death. More than 300,000 women worldwide die from childbirth each year; in the U.S. that number is approximately 700 women per year.

Fundamental healthcare equity issue 

ECRI recently participated in World Patient Safety Day: Safe Maternal and Newborn Care, and joined the call for Safe Maternal and Newborn Care, calling it “the most fundamental healthcare issue there is, and indeed, the most fundamental human rights issue.”

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Topics: Patient Safety, Evidence-based decision making, Best-practice evidence-based medicine, Maternal and newborn health, Healthcare inequity

Vaccination: For Your Residents, Your Family, Your Friends, and Yourself

All who have cared for our nation’s older adults through the COVID-19 pandemic have given so much; the toll in lives lost, illness, and financial and economic impacts have been great for those we serve, all aspects of the workforce, and provider organizations alike. But the care-critical work is not over.

As the COVID-19 pandemic response and recovery efforts continue worldwide, in our nation, and specifically in the aging services sector it is more important than ever that providers continue efforts to prevent harm to residents, staff, and healthcare partners who care for older adults, and their families and loved ones.

Data from Pennsylvania’s COVID-19 Vaccine Needs Assessment Survey, as shared by the Pennsylvania Department of Health on April 1, 2021, indicates the same trends that other U.S. studies also suggest: a statistically significant lag in COVID-19 vaccination acceptance rates in staff and contractors working in the aging services sector compared to the vaccination acceptance rates of the residents they serve and care for.

Sam Vic Rose Blog 4 23 21
 
“On March 16, 2021 the Acting Secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Health issued an order requiring skilled nursing facilities to complete the COVID-19 vaccine needs assessment survey.”
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Topics: Patient Safety, Aging/Continuum of Care, Aging Services

Mandatory Staff Vaccinations: Short-Term Benefits vs. Potential Unintended Consequences

With several vaccines against COVID-19 already available through emergency use authorization (EUA), others potentially on the way, and a nationwide vaccination campaign to administer the vaccine to as many people as quickly possible, the COVID-19 pandemic continues to transition to new phases. And yet with new hope comes new challenges and emerging risks as organizations work to safely care for older adults.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), skilled nursing facilities that conducted at least one vaccine clinic during the first month of roll-out administered a first shot to a median of 77.8% of their residents and 37.5% of their staff. As the agency points out, the moderately high coverage among residents is counterbalanced by relatively low coverage among staff.

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Topics: Patient Safety, Aging/Continuum of Care, Aging Services

Three Reasons for Switching from a Manual to an Automated Value Analysis Process

The shortest distance between two points is a straight line—but when it comes to navigating your hospital’s value analysis process, has it ever been that simple? This is especially true when relying on a manual process to manage complex value analysis decisions, where the sheer volume of information, number of projects and need for collaboration can pull you in several directions at once.

Moving to an automated process can definitely save time; but streamlining information access and providing evidence-based data enables teams to make decisions more quickly. This can increase cost savings as well as the delivery of quality patient care. Here are three reasons to consider making the switch:

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Topics: Patient Safety, Technology Trends, Technology Assessment

Technology’s Role in Safe Integration of Behavioral Health and Primary Care to Improve Patient Care

Integrated behavioral health and primary care (integration) has been identified as a promising approach to enhancing patient care delivery, safety and quality. Technology tools, including electronic health records (EHRs), telehealth, clinical decision support (CDS), and standards-based interoperability, can enable integration among various disciplines and improve the delivery to more readily addresses patient needs. Reinforcing these opportunities, virtual care and telehealth have dramatically changed care availability and delivery, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Topics: Patient Safety, Technology Trends, Partnership for Health IT

Patient Safety and Digital Health Tools: What Are Providers and Developers Focusing On at the End of 2020?

Patient safety remains, as it should, a priority for developers of and providers who use electronic health records (EHRs) and other health IT. For example, ECRI’s Partnership for Health IT Safety has worked with the HIMSS EHR Association on projects on opioids and behavioral health integration. More broadly, providers and developers continue active engagement in the Partnership and other patient safety initiatives.

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Topics: Patient Safety, Technology Trends, Partnership for Health IT

ECRI Cautions against CMS Blanket Coverage for FDA-designated Breakthrough Devices

In September 2020, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services proposed a rule that would establish a Medicare coverage pathway to provide Medicare beneficiaries nationwide with faster access to new, innovative medical devices designated as breakthrough by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). After the final rule is effective, the Medicare Coverage of Innovative Technology (MCIT) pathway would begin national Medicare coverage on the date of FDA market authorization and would continue for 4 years. Following is an excerpt of ECRI’s submitted public comment.

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Topics: Industry Trends, Patient Safety

Keep Healthcare Workers Safe to Improve Patient Safety

Healthcare workers face work-related risks, illnesses, and injuries, and patient safety is directly tied to worker safety. Creating a culture of safety is crucial.

ECRI, and its affiliate, the Institute for Safe Medication Practices (ISMP), proudly joined global leaders in supporting World Patient Safety Day 2020, held September 17. Now in its second year, World Patient Safety Day was founded by the World Health Organization (WHO) to recognize patient safety as a global health priority. At its inception, all 194 WHO Member States endorsed the establishment of the day with the objectives of increasing public awareness and engagement, enhancing global understanding, and spurring global solidarity and action to promote patient safety.

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Topics: Patient Safety, Aging/Continuum of Care