Louisiana success stories

LA Success Stories
Quality improvement endeavors can often feel overwhelming, but chances are, you can learn from the experiences that another physician, hospital or nursing home has had in a similar situation. Coupled with support from Quality Insights Quality Innovation Network, learning what has worked for others — and what didn't — is a valuable strategic planning component. 

We encourage you to read the success stories, contact us for more information, and also let us know if you have a Quality Insights' success story to share.

In their own words: P & S Surgical Hospital Achieves Success in Fall Reduction Project

This story was submitted by: P & S Surgical Hospital 

A patient falling during hospitalization can be a serious adverse event possibly resulting in a myriad of negative consequences. As one of the most common occurrences reported in hospitals, injuries from patient falls contribute to reduced mobility and independence, and increase the risk of premature death especially in those aged 65 and older.
The Safety Council at P&S Surgical Hospital routinely reviews all occurrences, and noted the number of potentially serious patient falls during the last quarter of 2010. The Council recommended that a multidisciplinary team be developed to include representatives from Nursing, CNAs, Physical Therapy, and Quality Improvement; this team was tasked with reviewing each occurrence, identifying opportunities for improvement, researching best practices, implementing strategies to reduce falls, and measuring the outcomes.

The Fall Team quickly introduced interventions and reinforced activities directed at prevention or mitigation of falls: hourly rounding with emphasis on ensuring call bell and patient articles within easy reach and making sure patients (and guests) understand the importance of the patient not getting out of bed unassisted--a typical nurse-to-patient conversation would be, “Mrs. Williams, I want to be sure you give me a call when you are ready to get out of bed! It’s very important that I be here to help you get up. Please don’t try to get up without me!” Our staff actively engaged the patient and family in all aspects of our fall prevention initiative including use of assistive devices and grab bars, instructions about medication timing, dosing, and related side effects—every effort was made to maximize the patient’s participation in his/her care. Other strategies were making sure the patient’s walking area was unobstructed and well-lit, providing patients with non-skid slipper socks, at least 2 staff members always go to assist patients in getting out of bed (especially total joint and bariatric patients, and those getting up for the first time post-procedure), and staff education was reinforced regarding fall risks and identification using the Morse Fall Scale.

Success was achieved!
Patient Falls in 2010 = 0.79 per 1000 patient days (9 falls)
Patient Falls in 2011 = 0.44 per 1000 patient days (5 falls)
Patient Falls YTD 2012 =0.37 per 1000 patient days (1 fall)

P&S Surgical Hospital is committed to being the premier healthcare provider in Northeast Louisiana, and this accomplishment is a credit to the outstanding healthcare providers we employ. Our challenge is to not just sustain this improvement, but to achieve zero patient falls—our belief is that one patient fall is too many.