An occurrence, simply defined is any event that happens in your day that was unexpected and not planned for. We discussed in the first article that an occurrence can be anything from a simple canceled surgery to a hospital transfer.
The occurrence reporting system works in tandem with your Quality Assurance Performance Improvement Program (QAPI). Occurrences should be reduced to writing so that the governing body is made aware of these issues that could be creating inefficiencies in care, or identify areas of patient care that require to be improved.
At Universal Healthcare Consulting, we get asked many times who should fill out an occurrence report? The answer is the employee who witnessed the event should be the person to fill out the occurrence form. If one employee witnesses a patient trip in the waiting area and later that day a second employee witnesses the same event and the next day a third person witnesses the same occurrence, each person witnessed a single event. To the person responsible for reviewing each of the occurrences it indicates that there is a trend. The identification of the trend causes an investigation to take place. The investigation will come up with possible causes for why the occurrence happened, develop strategies to cure the occurrence, and verify the issue has been resolved. Thus, each person with the knowledge of the occurrence is responsible for submitting the report for QA review.
Once the hazard is identified a corrective action must be developed and implemented. A process of assessing the corrective action for the desired result must be in place along with a policy on what to do if the desired result is not achieved. This will be further discussed in the next article.
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