The Health Quality & Safety Commission has finalised a national policy to help health and disability providers to report and investigate adverse events so preventable events are not repeated.
Chief Executive Dr Janice Wilson says the Commission has been working with DHBs for the past nine months to review and refine a policy first developed in 2008.
“The National Reportable Events Policy offers useful guidance to DHBs and other health and disability providers to help them report and investigate adverse events. The fundamental purpose of a reportable events system is to enhance consumer safety by learning from adverse events and near misses that occur. This policy will also ensure that reporting is consistent,” she says.
“The more we understand about what is happening and why, the easier it will be for providers to put in place quality and safety improvements that will make a real difference for patients.
“New Zealand has an excellent health system but patient harm is a serious and on-going problem, and the Commission is committed to working with DHBs and others across the health and disability sector to address this.”
Dr Wilson says the policy is broad enough to cover all health and disability providers, and they can tailor the operational details to suit their particular circumstances.
“It’s a consumer-oriented policy that is firmly focused on the need for system change, accountability and open disclosure and communication,” she says.
The Commission will be developing a set of education and training materials to support staff at DHBs and other health and disability providers who are responsible for reporting adverse events.
The National Reportable Events Policy is attached.