At Cabrini, we manage and monitor risks across many areas such as operational, financial, reputation and clinical risks. Effective risk management is a vital component of Cabrini’s mission. We prioritise keeping our patients, residents and staff safe and free from harm – this will allow Cabrini to grow and keep our health service strong to meet the needs of our community.
A planned approach to continuous quality improvement involves reviewing and improving each stage of the patient journey and includes audit, feedback, service redesign activities and innovation. We aim to improve safety for patients, residents and staff by minimising key risks and optimising the quality of the services we provide.
At Cabrini, we are targeting known clinical risks which include: patient/resident falls, medication errors and pressure injuries in order to:
(a) Reduce the occurrence of these clinical incidents
(b) Reduce the severity of harm associated with these incidents
We encourage all our staff to report all incidents using our incident reporting system so that we can monitor and track the effectiveness of our risk controls and prevent incidents occurring. The incident management system is actively monitored daily so that when incidents occur, the appropriate manager is notified and they can follow up and manage it in a timely way. The system can also track patients/residents who may have had frequent falls. Additional attention and resources can then be planned to prevent further falls/injury.
Cabrini’s mission is clear – we are committed to providing excellence in all our services. We put patients’ and residents’ safety first and look for opportunities to improve our care and services.
Even with efforts to minimise risk, unfortunately incidents can occur. We need to respond promptly if a patient, resident or staff member does suffer an accident or event that results in them being hurt or harmed in any way. These incidents are also called adverse events.
Cabrini supports open disclosure – this is the process of open communication with patients and their families following an adverse event that has resulted in unintended harm. The process also involves discussion of the incident, investigation and makes recommendations for system improvement. Staff also need to be supported through such incidents and Cabrini is committed to providing the right environment, resources and culture to guide staff.
Important ways you and your visitors can assist in managing risks and improving quality.
When you are admitted to Cabrini, an identity band will be placed around your wrist or perhaps your ankle. This band has specific information about you including your name, date of birth and address. Staff will ask you many times in a day to confirm the information about you is correct before any medication, procedure or other treatment occurs. This is to ensure the prescribed treatment is being administered to the right person at the right time. It is also important to inform nursing and medical staff about any allergies you have, whether they be to medication, food, tapes or anything else because a different coloured band will be used to highlight your allergy status.
It is important to bring your current medication to hospital with you. This will help the doctors, pharmacists and nursing staff know what medication you are currently taking and help the doctors to plan your medical care. It is also important to let staff know about any over-the-counter medication you are taking as sometimes there may be interactions between these medications and your prescribed medication. We strongly encourage you to ask questions of your doctor and the nursing or pharmacy staff caring for you if you do not understand anything about the medications you are taking, especially if your medications have been changed.
When you are admitted to hospital, your nurse will orientate you to the ward and give you tips on how you and your family/carer can help to prevent you having a fall while in hospital. Every patient admitted to Cabrini is screened to determine if you are at high, medium or low risk of falling. Depending on your level of risk a falls reduction plan is put in place to help prevent falls during your stay. Cabrini is using a traffic light system with different colours that inform staff and help to keep you safe. We encourage you to wear appropriate fitting footwear/slippers and clothing to reduce your risk of falling.
Hand hygiene and infection prevention
Please inform staff on your arrival if you have been suffering with a cold, flu or gastro symptoms in the days leading up to your admission. Visitors with any of these symptoms are asked not to visit until they are completely recovered to help prevent the risk of the infection spreading. Visitors and family members will be asked to use the sanitiser hand gel before and after their visit with you. The hand gel will be located at entrances to ward areas and patient bedrooms. Place your hands under the pump and squirt the gel onto the palm of your hands. Rub your hands together and roll over your fingers and thumbs.
Another important thing patients can do is to remind staff who care for you to make sure they also use the hand gel. The use of hand gel has greatly reduced the spread of germs and you can play a role.
Pressure injuries can be a problem for many patients who come into hospitals and aged care facilities for care. People who are frail, elderly, have a chronic illness or an acute illness that restricts their mobility are at risk. A pressure injury is an area of skin and/or underlying tissue that has been damaged due to constant pressure. Pressure injuries can develop over a very short time and staff will monitor and assess your risk every day.
A range of measures can be put in place to help prevent pressure injuries. If your medical condition permits, to the key to avoiding pressure injuries is to move early and often. Avoid sitting or lying in the one position for a prolonged time. For patients who are unable to move independently, your nursing staff will reposition you on a regular basis. Please inform your nurse if you have any sore spots such as on your backside or heels as this can be a sign of early pressure injury.