Hospitalized patient fall fatalities eliminated

[The Hospitalist, February 10, 2010] A concerted effort to reduce patient falls in Minnesota hospitals culminated last year as the Gopher State reported zero fatal falls—a result heavily attributed to hospitalist efforts.

A report last month from Minnesota health officials shows that no patients died from falls in 2009. It was the first fatality-free reporting period since the state began publicly disclosing adverse events six years ago. In 2008, 10 fall-related fatalities were reported in Minnesota hospitals.

"We went through our order sets and eliminated potentially unnecessary medications across the board," says Scott Tongen, MD, a hospitalist and medical director for quality at United Hospital in St. Paul. "And we challenged hospitalists to stop prescribing those … and at the same time we had to work with the nursing staff."

Posted on February 10, 2010 in OnlineThe Hospitalist eWireUnited Hospital

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