Best Practices to Improve Reporting of Patient Safety Concerns

University of Cambridge and Johns Hopkins Medicine looked at what prevented employees from raising patient safety concerns.

Too often, patient safety concerns about their care in medical facilities has gone unreported or under-reported. In response, there is new research about how to fix this.

As Johns Hopkins reports:

“In a case study published online last week in Academic Medicine, an international team of researchers led by the University of Cambridge and Johns Hopkins Medicine looked at what prevented employees from raising concerns. The study identifies measures to help health care organizations encourage their employees to speak up and recommends a systematic approach to promoting employee voice that appears to have already made a positive impact at Johns Hopkins.”

“It’s not enough just to say you’re committed to employee voice. Health care staff must genuinely feel comfortable speaking up if organizations are going to provide safe, high-quality care,” says Mary Dixon-Woods, D.Phil., M.Sc., a professor at the University of Cambridge, director of THIS Institute (The Healthcare Improvement Studies Institute) and the study’s lead author. “Even when reporting mechanisms are in place, employees may not report disruptive behaviors if they don’t feel safe in doing so and don’t think their concerns will be addressed.”

“Because health-care workers often are reluctant to raise concerns about co-workers and unsafe behaviors, leadership at Johns Hopkins Medicine sought to encourage employee voice in the organization by first identifying barriers. To address the issues raised in these interviews, Johns Hopkins leaders developed, implemented, and in some cases expanded a series of interventions from fall 2014 through summer 2016. These interventions included clear definitions of acceptable and unacceptable behavior, well-coordinated reporting mechanisms, leadership training on having difficult conversations, and consistent consequences for disruptive behaviors.”

 

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Best Practices to Improve Reporting of Patient Concerns
Credit: iStock

 

Where Cancer Rates Are Highest

Today, we look at cancer rates by country.

Yesterday, we cited some interesting cancer facts. Now, let’s look at cancer rates by country. And there are some surprises!

As reported by Evan Comen for 24/7 Wall Street:

“About 1 in every 6 deaths on the planet is due to cancer, the second leading cause of death worldwide. In the United States alone, the cost of cancer care amounts to approximately $157 billion in medical expenditures per year. As the global population ages, the prevalence of cancer is likely to increase. So will the costs of care as more advanced, expensive treatments become the medical standard.”

“Correlated with factors like age, income, and health behaviors, the incidence of cancer varies heavily around the world. The quality of medical treatment and access to health care is worse in poorer, developing nations. Yet, age is the main risk factor for cancer. And many countries with high incidence of cancer are wealthy, developed nations with high life expectancy.”

“To determine the countries with the highest incidence of new cancer cases, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed the estimated age-adjusted new cancer diagnosis rates for 185 countries in 2018 with data from the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer.”

Here are the ten countries with the highest cancer rates in this analysis [Note: These countries have high life expectancies, and thus, many older residents.]:

  1. Australia — cancer diagnosis rate = 468.0 new cases per 100,000 people; life expectancy at birth = 82.5 years.
  2. New Zealand— cancer diagnosis rate = 438.1 new cases per 100,000 people; life expectancy at birth = 81.6 years.
  3. Ireland— cancer diagnosis rate = 373.7 new cases per 100,000 people;
    life expectancy at birth = 81.6 years.
  4. Hungary — cancer diagnosis rate = 368.1 new cases per 100,000 people; life expectancy at birth = 75.6 years.
  5. United States — cancer diagnosis rate = 352.2 new cases per 100,000 people; life expectancy at birth = 78.7 years.
  6.  Belgium — cancer diagnosis rate = 345.8 new cases per 100,000 people; life expectancy at birth = 81.0 years.
  7. France— cancer diagnosis rate = 344.1 new cases per 100,000 people; life expectancy at birth = 82.3 years.
  8. Denmark — cancer diagnosis rate = 340.4 new cases per 100,000 people; life expectancy at birth = 80.7 years.
  9. Norway — cancer diagnosis rate = 337.8 new cases per 100,000 people; life expectancy at birth = 82.5 years.
  10. Netherlands — cancer diagnosis rate = 334.1 new cases per 100,000 people; life expectancy at birth = 81.5 years.

Click the image of Croatia to see the other 15 countries on 24/7 Wall St.’s list.

Where Cancer Rates Are Highest

 

Interesting Cancer Facts

Let’s look at lesser-known cancer facts.

There’s still a lot that we do not know about cancer. Today, we look at several “surprising” cancer facts. As 24/7 Wall St. notes:

“No place is immune to cancer. And nearly everyone is familiar with the disease in one form or another. We have learned much about cancer. Yet there is much more still to learn.”

“To identify the most surprising facts about cancer, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed recent reports released by the American Cancer Society, National Cancer Institute, Cancer Atlas, and World Health Organization. We opted for generally less well-known facts.”

These are among the 20 facts cited:

  • “What many may not know is that there are more than 100 different kinds of cancer, many of which the typical American has never heard of. The name of each type of cancer typically includes the organ or tissues where the cancer developed. In some cases, the cancer is named for the type of cell that forms it.”
  • “Age is the largest risk factor for cancer. According to the NCI Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results program, the median age of cancer diagnosis is 66 years. The American Cancer Society reports that 87% of cancer cases in the United States are diagnosed in people 50 years and over.”
  • “According to the NCI, about 38.4% of men and women in the U.S. will be diagnosed with cancer at some point in their life. The most commonly diagnosed cancers so far in 2018 have been breast, lung and bronchus, prostate, colon and rectum, and melanoma of the skin cancers.”
  • “The World Health Organization estimates that 447,000 people will be diagnosed with cancer in 2018. Most of the new cancer cases will occur in Western countries, the country with the highest cancer rate is Australia. In Australia, an estimated 468 people out of every 100,000 people will get cancer. New Zealand has the second highest cancer rate at roughly 438 new cases annually per 100,000 people.” 
  • “Scientists believe cancer is not caused by just one single cause but by the interaction of many factors. Still, there are several factors known to significantly increase the risk of cancer. According to the ACS Cancer Atlas, between one-third and one-half of all cancer cases worldwide are preventable. Lifestyle factors such as smoking regularly, eating a high-fat diet, and working with toxic chemicals are top risk factors. Other factors include obesity, vaccine-preventable infections, and pollution.

Click the image to read more.

Interesting Cancer Facts
Source: Motortion / iStock

 

International Health Efficiency Scores

Click the image to learn more about the health-efficiency index and to see the latest index rankings. The United States is tied for 54th!

The United States annually spends more than $9,500 per person for health care. Nonetheless, the effectiveness of this spending lags far behind many other nations (that spend a lot less).

According to a recent Bloomberg report:

“Want medical care without quickly draining your fortune? Try Singapore or Hong Kong as your healthy havens. The U.S. will cost you the most for treatment, both in absolute terms and relative to average incomes. Yet, the life expectancy of Americans — about 79 years — was exceeded by more than 25 countries and territories, according to an annual Bloomberg analysis in almost 200 economies.” 

“A health-efficiency index was then created to rank those with average lifespans of at least 70 years, GDP per-capita exceeding $5,000 and a minimum population of 5 million. And Americans aren’t getting their medical money’s worth, according to each of the categories.” 

“The U.S. had the second-highest per-capita spending on health care at $9,536. Switzerland’s average based on gross domestic product was $9,818. But that $282 supplement helped deliver an extra 4.2 years of life — with the average Swiss lifespan of almost 83.”

Click the image to learn more about the health-efficiency index and to see the latest index rankings. The United States is tied for 54th!

International Health Efficiency Scores

Regularly Have Health Exams

What exactly should we be be tested for? To answer that question, we again turn to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Many of know that we should have regular health exams. But what exactly should we be be tested for? To answer that question, we again turn to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

According to the CDC: “It’s time to take charge of your health! Schedule an appointment with your health care provider to discuss what screenings and exams you need and when you need them.”

What Health Services are Recommended?

These links provide information about key exams, screenings, and vaccinations:

 

And these links provide tools to help prepare for your next appointment.

 

Cancer Health

We highly recommend this FREE site.

Introduced in 2017, the Cancer Health Web site has information on a great many types of cancer. We highly recommend this FREE site.

Cancer Health empowers people living with cancer to actively manage and advocate for their care and improve their overall health. Launched in 2017, the Web site provides accessible information about treatment and quality of life for people with cancer and their loved ones, as well as information about cancer prevention and health policy for a general readership. The information provided on this site is designed to complement, not replace, the relationship between an individual and his/her own medical providers.”

Click the image to see the latest information at the site.

Cancer Health

American Cancer Society as a Valuable Resource

At the American Cancer Society, we’re on a mission to free the world from cancer. Until we do, we’ll be funding and conducting research, sharing expert information, supporting patients, and spreading the word about prevention. All so you can live longer — and better.”

Each month, the organization provides a very useful online newsletter. Here are some highlights from the August 2018 newsletter:

Monthly Giving Helps Us Continue Our Mission

Monthly Giving Helps Us Continue Our Mission