Trends in Adverse Event Rates in Hospitalized Patients, 2010-2019
Data from the Medicare Patient Safety Monitoring System show a downward pattern in hospital-acquired infections, falls, and other adverse events among hospitalized persons over the last decade. The dataset included 244,542 adult inpatients admitted to 3,156 acute care hospitals across the United States, stratified into five groups: acute myocardial infarction, heart failure, pneumonia, major surgical procedures, and all other conditions. A total of 21 different adverse event measures related to medication, procedures, infections, and other aspects of care were tracked. Researchers observed that adverse events occurred with significantly less frequency among hospital patients admitted for the four specified conditions from 2010–2019. A significant decrease in adjusted adverse event rates was also documented from 2012–2019 for the other conditions. "Although it cannot be certain that the trends represent improvement in patient safety, some factors support that this may be the case," wrote the authors of the serial cross-sectional study, pointing out the launch of pivotal safety campaigns during the study period. They also noted that growing adoption of safer processes of care and trend such as broad takeup of minimally invasive surgical techniques may have contributed to the findings.
Read more on the Journal of the American Medical Association (07/12/22) Vol 328, No. 2, P. 173.