November 28, 2011 7:02 AM Subscribe
posted by Deathalicious (53 comments total)
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The term never event
describes when something happens in a medical setting that should never occur. The list of never events (formally called "Serious Reportable Events)
released by the NQF
includes mistakes such as performing surgery on the wrong body part (or the wrong patient!), or patient suicide while under care. Despite their moniker, "never" events do happen
Medical services rendered for never events, or for complications resulting from never events, are often non-reimbursable. Insurers will not pay
in the case of medical errors.
However, some of the listed never events do not constitute medical errors that could have been prevented. For example, one of the "never events" listed is patient falls. It's argued this is a problem, because unlike other medical errors, falls cannot be necessarily prevented. This has had unintended consequences:
These unintended consequences are likely to include a decrease in patient mobility, an increase in use of physical restraints, and a tendency to focus on measures such as new prevention devices. These can cause reallocation of resources from areas that might have greater impacts on patient safety.
"Never Events", originally a concept in U.S. healthcare, is also employed in the UK healthcare system