A Guide to Healthcare Risk Management Planning
A Step-by-Step Process for Handling an Incident
Image via Unsplash.com/Oscar Sutton
The unforeseen may happen and an adverse event may occur even with the most robust risk management plan in place.
Create an outlined risk response guide to reduce harm to those involved in the incident; correct any unsafe physical conditions within the campus, building, and/or rooms; and evaluate any equipment that was used. A detailed plan also helps reverse or eliminate any staff inefficiencies, specifically regarding unsafe practices or a lack of skills.
When an incident does occur, it requires ongoing surveillance of the event — including chronicling your responses and revising them as needed — to improve safety and reduce future risk.
In general, when an incident has occurred, use the following steps (tailoring them to your practice environment).
The 6-Step Process for Handling an Incident
1) Define an incident.
Educate staff as to what events trigger the classification of incidents within your organization.
2) Tend to the affected individuals immediately.
Work quickly to correct the injury, damage, or adverse event. Provide care, comfort, and reassurance to those negatively impacted.
3) Communicate articulately.
Designate who is responsible for communication management. This person should debrief all persons involved in the incident as soon as possible, either as a group or individually. This means patients, staff, visitors, leaders/managers, and administration. Frequency of announcements are at the discretion of the risk manager or their designee and are decided upon as per the situation in a case-by-case basis.
4) Report the incident internally and externally (if necessary).
- Internal Reporting: Ideally, your risk management plan and office environment has a reporting structure in place. If it does not, you will need to relay the incident to all staff involved with the patient and the administration.
- External Reporting System: Some instances will need proper and timely communication to county, state, and federal agencies. (i.e. Medicare, county or state health departments) If an incident or event falls in this category, designate who is responsible for submitting external reports and the timeline for it.
5) Track sentinel events internally.
Designate a risk manager or another appointed person to track this event, location, people involved, and the effects of the incident. This enables you to find trends, if they exist, and helps to create a targeted approach for reducing or eliminating risk and unsafe conditions or practices in the future.
6) Identify areas of risk that require more attention.
Determine what’s needed to reduce this risk (or similar events) from ever occurring again. Some examples are: increase staffing levels, remove faulty equipment, revise policies and procedures as needed, or remediate any knowledge or skills gaps that the staff may have.
The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Berxi™ or Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance Company. This article (subject to change without notice) is for informational purposes only, and does not constitute professional advice. Click here to read our full disclaimer
The product descriptions provided here are only brief summaries and may be changed without notice. The full coverage terms and details, including limitations and exclusions, are contained in the insurance policy. If you have questions about coverage available under our plans, please review the policy or contact us at 833-242-3794 or firstname.lastname@example.org. “20% savings” is based on industry pricing averages.
Berxi™ is a part of Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance (BHSI). Insurance products are distributed through Berkshire Hathaway Global Insurance Services, California License # 0K09397. BHSI is part of Berkshire Hathaway’s National Indemnity group of insurance companies, consisting of National Indemnity and its affiliates, which hold financial strength ratings of A++ from AM Best and AA+ from Standard & Poor’s. The rating scales can be found at www.ambest.com and www.standardandpoors.com, respectively.
No warranty, guarantee, or representation, either expressed or implied, is made as to the correctness, accuracy, completeness, adequacy, or sufficiency of any representation or information. Any opinions expressed herein are subject to change without notice.
The information on this web site is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment, and does not purport to establish a standard of care under any circumstances. All content, including text, graphics, images and information, contained on or available through this web site is for general information purposes only based upon the information available at the time of presentation, and does not constitute medical, legal, regulatory, compliance, financial, professional, or any other advice.
BHSI makes no representation and assumes no responsibility or liability for the accuracy of information contained on or available through this web site, and such information is subject to change without notice. You are encouraged to consider and confirm any information obtained from or through this web site with other sources, and review all information regarding any medical condition or treatment with your physician or medical care provider. NEVER DISREGARD PROFESSIONAL MEDICAL ADVICE OR DELAY SEEKING MEDICAL TREATMENT BECAUSE OF SOMETHING THAT YOU HAVE READ ON OR ACCESSED THROUGH THIS WEB SITE.
BHSI is not a medical organization, and does not recommend, endorse or make any representation about the efficacy, appropriateness or suitability of any specific tests, products, procedures, treatments, services, opinions, health care providers or other information contained on or available through this web site. BHSI IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR, AND EXPRESSLY DISCLAIMS ALL LIABILITY FOR, ANY ADVICE, COURSE OF TREATMENT, DIAGNOSIS OR ANY OTHER SERVICES OR PRODUCTS THAT YOU OBTAIN AFTER REVIEWING THIS WEB SITE.