Healthcare Credentialing | symplr Blog

Not Your Grandmother's Incident Reporting System

Written by Melissa Outlaw | Jul 16, 2014 8:59:00 PM

Do you remember when a hospital’s incident report form was one sheet of paper? If you’ve been in healthcare awhile, you probably do. Just like everything in life, the way hospitals document and use incident data has changed drastically!

The old “incident form” was once just a tool to capture risk management issues, divert litigation and document follow through. The incident form was usually completed by the staff person involved or their immediate supervisor. After the file was closed, it was filed properly and “available”, but rarely revisited unless needed in defense of a lawsuit as a result of the episode.

Today’s process is very different as we continue the trend to transparency and a more proactive approach to patient care. The incident report (now known as the event report) has become much more than a paper form used to document issues. Event reporting has blossomed into an electronic recording of incidents with the ability to automate notifications, ensure consistency in workflows and confirm documentation, if required, is attached.

A significant benefit to using event reporting software is meeting all the new patient safety and quality requirements as events can be monitored, reported and trended from one place.

When utilized to its full potential an event reporting software should:

  • Provide management with clear and concise reporting options

  • Allow committees and workgroups to follow trends and opportunities easily

  • Identify repetitive issues before it's too late

  • Be used as a case management tool to enter documentation improvement needs

  • Allow investigation and trending of current events for items like core measures data, RCAs, FMEAs, etc.

  • Help identify cases for peer review

To meet today’s challenging demands your event reporting system should include Patient Safety, PSO Reporting, Patient Compliments & Complaints and be used as an Infection Preventionist tool.

With a robust event reporting system, and a few tweaks to your information gathering processes, your organization can make a significant impact in improving the overall quality of healthcare.

Stay tuned for future articles discussing how an effective event reporting system can support new demands and streamline documentation and reporting.