Author(s): de Vries EN, Ramrattan MA, Smorenburg SM, Gouma DJ, Boermeester MA
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Abstract INTRODUCTION: Adverse events in hospitals constitute a serious problem with grave consequences. Many studies have been conducted to gain an insight into this problem, but a general overview of the data is lacking. We performed a systematic review of the literature on in-hospital adverse events. METHODS: A formal search of Embase, Cochrane and Medline was performed. Studies were reviewed independently for methodology, inclusion and exclusion criteria and endpoints. Primary endpoints were incidence of in-hospital adverse events and percentage of preventability. Secondary endpoints were adverse event outcome and subdivision by provider of care, location and type of event. RESULTS: Eight studies including a total of 74 485 patient records were selected. The median overall incidence of in-hospital adverse events was 9.2\%, with a median percentage of preventability of 43.5\%. More than half (56.3\%) of patients experienced no or minor disability, whereas 7.4\% of events were lethal. Operation- (39.6\%) and medication-related (15.1\%) events constituted the majority. We present a summary of evidence-based interventions aimed at these categories of events. CONCLUSIONS: Adverse events during hospital admission affect nearly one out of 10 patients. A substantial part of these events are preventable. Since a large proportion of the in-hospital events are operation- or drug-related, interventions aimed at preventing these events have the potential to make a substantial difference.
This article was published in Qual Saf Health Care
and referenced in Pediatrics & Therapeutics