Smaller, shorter-term projects

In addition to our Diagnostic Excellence Initiative , we support other projects aimed at improving the experience and outcomes of patient care. This has included medication safety, support for investigators conducting research in patient-family engagement and other select projects in patient safety. 

Medication Safety in the Community 

More than 1.5 million medication errors occur in the U.S. annually. In a report from the National Academy of Medicine, Improving Diagnosis in Health Care, “errors are common at every stage, from prescription and administration of a drug to monitoring of the patient's response.” The risk of harm begins with the high number of medications used, most of which are prescribed in community settings (e.g., outpatient clinics, rehabilitation centers,  people’s homes). Nearly one third of U.S. adults take five or more medications and each additional medication causes a 10 percent increase in the likelihood of medication harm.

Beginning in 2017, we identified ways to improve medication safety in community settings, with an emphasis on patients with complex, chronic health conditions and functional limitations. With this work wrapping up in 2021, we look forward to sharing what we have learned.

Patient-family Engagement 

Meaningful patient and family engagement remains the exception, not the rule. Yet, when people are engaged in their health care, there is greater continuity of care, better outcomes, lower health care costs and more. In 2015, we began supporting early-career investigators who specialize in patient and family engagement research. The work of investigators continues through 2020

Redesigning the ICU

From 2012 to 2015, we explored quality improvement projects in critical care. Work in this area was a partnership with four academic medical centersBeth Israel Deaconess Medical CenterBrigham and Women’s HospitalJohns Hopkins Medical Center and University of California, San Francisco Medical Center. Lessons from this work are shared in a report from the Evaluation Sciences Unit at Stanford School of Medicine. 

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