Risk assessment is an examination of possible threats and hazards. Risk assessment is important in every system, and the healthcare system is no exception. The goal of risk assessment in healthcare is to measure the readiness of the healthcare system and ensure that it will not cause risks to patients or organization. The paper is aimed at the investigation of risk assessment and management related to the healthcare system.
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Ryan et al. (2012) state that risk management is the process that includes identifying, assessing, analyzing, and managing risks. There are three major resources that were designed to help managers to assess and manage risks that influence patient’s safety and well-being. These documents were created by the National Patient Safety Agency. Although the documents were created from 2006 to 2008, they are still relevant and useful.
In the first document called Risk Assessment Programme, the National Patient Safety Agency (2006) is mainly focused on the patient safety risk assessment process. This process is considered at the stage of commissioning. The document Healthcare Risk Assessment Made Easy (2007) is aimed at emphasizing the difference between a hazard and a risk. Besides, the National Patient Safety Agency (2007) describes the five main stages of risk management. A Risk Matrix for Risk Managers (2008) describes an integrated system of risk assessment. The National Patient Safety Agency (2007) divide this document into five sections: guidance on consequence scoring; guidance on likelihood scoring; risk scoring and grading; relationship with incident scoring; and a model matrix.
There are a lot of types of risks related to patient care such as clinical, environmental, financial, political, and others. According to the National Patient Safety Agency (2006), “risk is inherent in all aspects of healthcare, including organizational strategy and business planning; financial planning; projects and service developments; purchasing; design of services; treatment and care delivery” (p. 6). Risk assessment is extremely important because it can directly or indirectly affects patient’s health.
The risk assessment is to be a key tool for every healthcare organization. Verlicchi, Al Aukidy, Galletti, Petrovic, & Barceló (2012) underline that hospitals are the brightest example of those places where the risk assessment is necessary. Although hospitals are aimed at providing health and comfortable conditions for patients, there are some certain factors that are considered to be dangers. For instance, Covello and Merkhoher (2013) emphasize that there are dangers related to environmental health and safety such as different radioactive materials, infectious, smoke, fire, and others. That is why the risk assessment is to be implemented to remediate certain dangers in hospitals. Apart from this, hospitals face the risks that refer to physical and financial securities. These risks have to be taken into account too.
To sum up, the risk assessment is an essential part of healthcare management. There are different areas of medical administration where the risk management is to be implemented. Health managers identify, assess, analyze, and manage risks. Every healthcare organization has to introduce certain strategies and policies to remediate risks related to patient care.
Covello, V. T., & Merkhoher, M. W. (2013). Risk assessment methods: Approaches for assessing health and environmental risks. New York, NY: Springer Science & Business Media.
The National Patient Safety Agency. (2008). A risk matrix for risk managers. Web.
The National Patient Safety Agency. (2007). Healthcare risk assessment made easy. Web.
The National Patient Safety Agency. (2006). Risk assessment programme. Web.
Ryan, P. B., Madigan, D., Stang, P. E., Marc Overhage, J., Racoosin, J. A., & Hartzema, A. G. (2012). Empirical assessment of methods for risk identification in healthcare data: results from the experiments of the Observational Medical Outcomes Partnership. Statistics in Medicine, 31(30), 4401-4415.
Verlicchi, P., Al Aukidy, M., Galletti, A., Petrovic, M., & Barceló, D. (2012). Hospital effluent: investigation of the concentrations and distribution of pharmaceuticals and environmental risk assessment. Science of the Total Environment, 430, 109-118.