On March 17th, 2011 the last phase of the EARCAS study: Adverse Events in Nursing Homes and Healthcare and Social Services Centers”, was held at the premises of the Ministry of Health, Social Policy and Equality. This project is financed by the Quality Agency of the National Health System within the framework of Strategy Nº 8: Improving the safety of patients receiving healthcare in NHS centers.
Throughout the day, using the nominal group method, the group worked on analyzing the data obtained in previous phases of the study to identify the barriers to patient safety and design strategies for improving current conditions in such healthcare settings.
The Conference was attended by 10 experts in patient quality and safety and 25 healthcare professionals from the different Health Regions.
The objectives of the EARCAS study are:
- Explore the aspects of the culture of safety in the centers that provide healthcare and social services in Spain.
- Establish which are the most relevant risks related to healthcare provision in such centers.
- Prioritize actions oriented to achieve safer healthcare and social services provision.
- Facilitate the development of effective and sustainable strategies for preventing adverse events and improve patient safety in centers providing healthcare and social services.
The study has 3 phases:
- 1. Delphi study: intended as first approach to Incidents and Adverse Events in facilities providing healthcare and social services. In this first phase of the study, 88 such centers from all over the Spanish territory participated in the Delphi I study with a response rate of 90.7%. In the Delphi II study 75 centers participated with a response rate of 85.2%.
- 2. Survey: intended as a tool to estimate the frequency and distribution of Adverse Events in a 12 month period. 76 of 88 such centers participated in the survey with a response rate of 86.4%, making up a total of 940 surveys (12 per center).
- 3. Nominal Group: its objective is to analyze, detect, prioritize and create proposals. The Nominal Group comprises 4 work groups focused on: to improve patient safety during the admission/readmission process, improve the quality of care provided to the patient, reduce healthcare related infections and improve safety in medication procedures.
The EARCAS study has been possible through a contract between Ministry of Health, Social Policy and Equality and the Zaragoza University.