Europe is at the forefront of acknowledging the importance of patient safety and risk management. Eight to 10 percent of patients in the region are subjected to healthcare-associated infections and medication or prescription errors. Around 30 to 40 percent of these issues are preventable, and healthcare institutions have rolled out several initiatives for reporting and learning systems, as well as patient safety directives. Denmark in particular has shown considerable progress, followed closely by the U.K. and France.
New analysis from Frost & Sullivan Patient Safety and Risk Management in the United Kingdom, Denmark and France, finds that European Union (EU) member states have identified 13 directives for patient safety. Nine states including the U.K., Denmark and France have implemented 10 to 12 recommendations, which are expected to be fully enforced by 2015. The EU’s aim to digitally enable its healthcare system by completely transitioning from a paper documentation system to electronic health records (EHR) by 2020 will bring its vision of a safe environment for patients to fruition.
“Healthcare systems in these three countries have established quality standards for the use of drugs and medical devices. They have also initiated a range of patient safety initiatives for national and regional incidence reporting, infection control, medication management, adverse event reporting, e-prescribing, and surveillance,” says Frost & Sullivan Healthcare Research Analyst Shruthi Parakkal. “The need to comply with these programs and policies will drive the uptake of healthcare IT solutions for patient safety and risk management.”
Healthcare IT vendors have already recognised patient safety solutions as a potential high-growth segment. They are tailoring patient safety into existing IT healthcare solutions, such as EHR, and extending their portfolio to include solutions solely aimed at tackling patient safety challenges.
However, the organisational culture in several healthcare facilities and hospitals does not favour the publishing of data related to their performance, thereby hampering patient safety efforts at large. Further, most patient safety plans focus on hospitals, with very little emphasis on extending the safety culture to primary and generalist care, or to patients reporting safety incidents.
“For universal adoption, it is essential that all initiatives include participation from all healthcare sectors as well as patients,” adds Parakkal. “The involvement of patients, especially, in recording and analysing patient information will be crucial to decrease safety problems, such as adverse drug events and infections.”
Patient Safety and Risk Management in the United Kingdom, Denmark, and France is part of the Connected Health Growth Partnership Service program. Frost & Sullivan’s related research services include: Global Pharmaceutical Contract Manufacturing Market, US Neurovascular Intervention Market, and European Market Trends for Ventilation Equipment and Accessories. All research services included in subscriptions provide detailed market opportunities and industry trends evaluated following extensive interviews with market participants.
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