The 10th Anniversary of Healthcare—Healthcare Quality and Patient Safety

A special issue of Healthcare (ISSN 2227-9032). This special issue belongs to the section "Healthcare Quality and Patient Safety".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 December 2023) | Viewed by 9389

Special Issue Editor

Department of Anesthesia, Intensive Care and Emergency, Molinette Hospital and University of Turin, 10126 Turin, Italy
Interests: nutrition support in cancer and critically ill patients; vascular access devices; palliative care (screening and symptom control) in advanced cancer patients and seriously ill patients with end-stage organ failure; healthcare service management (in-hospital admission and management; safe discharge)
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues, 

In 2023, we will celebrate the 10th anniversary volume of the journal Healthcare (ISSN 2227-9032), and we would be delighted if you could join us on this wonderful occasion. 

Healthcare is an international, peer-reviewed, rapidly refereed, open access journal that is published online by MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. Healthcare is indexed by SCIE, PubMed (NLM), and several others. The impact factor of this journal is 3.160, and it ranks 50/109 (Q2) in the category “Health Care Sciences & Services”, and 35/88 (Q2) in “Health Policy & Services” in Web of Science. The inaugural issue was released in 2013, and in 2020, we published the 1000th paper in this journal. In 2021, we achieved our goal of publishing 1200 papers in one year. Thus, Healthcare is rapidly developing. 

In recongition of this significant milestone, we are launching a Special Issue entitled "The 10th Anniversary of Healthcare—Healthcare Quality and Patient Safety". This Special Issue will include high-quality papers on topics within the broad scope of Healthcare. We invite you to contribute to our 10th anniversary Special Issue, which will focus on patient quality and safety. Additionally, papers that focus on performance improvement initiatives, patient and staff safety, as well as organizational effectiveness, are particularly welcome.

Dr. Paolo Cotogni
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Healthcare is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2700 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • healthcare quality
  • patient safety
  • timely informtion exchange
  • efficiency of patient care/resident services

Published Papers (8 papers)

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10 pages, 586 KiB  
Article
Medical Misadventures as Errors and Mistakes and Motor Vehicular Accidents in the Disproportionate Burden of Childhood Mortality among Blacks/African Americans in the United States: CDC Dataset, 1968–2015
by Laurens Holmes, Jr., Michael Enwere, Robert Mason, Mackenzie S. Holmes, Pascal Ngalim, Kume Nsongka, Kerti Deepika, Gbadebo Ogungbade, Maura Poleon and David T. Mage
Healthcare 2024, 12(4), 477; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare12040477 - 15 Feb 2024
Viewed by 879
Abstract
Purpose: Racial disparities in infant mortality in the United States persist after adjustment for known confounders of race and mortality association, as well as heterogeneity assessment. Epidemiologic and clinical data continue to show the survival disadvantages of Black/AA children: when Black/AAs are compared [...] Read more.
Purpose: Racial disparities in infant mortality in the United States persist after adjustment for known confounders of race and mortality association, as well as heterogeneity assessment. Epidemiologic and clinical data continue to show the survival disadvantages of Black/AA children: when Black/AAs are compared to whites, they are three times as likely to die from all-cause mortality. The persistent inability to remove the variance in race–mortality association is partly due to unobserved, unmeasured, and residual confounding, as well as implicit biases in public health and clinical medicine in health equity transformation. This current epidemiologic-perspective explanatory model study aimed to examine the possible explanation of racial differences in U.S. infant mortality using medical misadventures as errors and mistakes, and infants’ involvement in motor vehicular traffic accidents. Materials and Method: Using CDC WONDER ecologic data from 1968 to 2015, we assessed the infant mortality-rate ratio and percent change associated with medical misadventures as well as motor vehicular accidents or trauma. The rate ratio and percent change were estimated using stratification analysis and trend homogeneity, respectively. Results: There was a Black–white racial difference in medical misadventures during the study period. Relative to the years 1968–1978 (rate ratio [RR], 1.43), there was a steady increase in the mortality-rate ratio in 1979–1998 (52%, RR = 1.52), and mortality was more than two times as likely in 1999–2015 (RR = 2.37). However, with respect to motor vehicular accident/trauma mortality, the mortality ratio, although lower among Blacks in 1968–1978 (RR, 0.92), increased in 1979–1998 by 27% (RR = 1.27) but decreased in 1999–2015 (RR, 1.17), though there was still an excess of 17% mortality among Black/AAs. The percent change for medical misadventures indicated an increasing trend from 9.3% in 1998 to 52% in 2015. However, motor vehicular-related mortality indicated a positive trend in 1998 (38.5%) but a negative trend in 2015 (−8.4%). Conclusions: There were substantial race differentials or variances in infant mortality associated with medical misadventures compared to traffic accidents, and Black/AA children relative to whites experienced a survival disadvantage. These comparative findings are suggestive of medical misadventures and motor vehicular trauma as potential explanations for some of the persistent Black–white disparities in overall infant mortality in the U.S. From these findings, we recommend a national effort to address these issues, thus narrowing the observed disparities in the U.S. infant mortality burden among Black/AAs. Full article
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12 pages, 235 KiB  
Article
Stakeholders’ Perspective on the Key Features of Printed Educational Resources to Improve the Quality of Clinical Communication
by Silvia Gonella, Paola Di Giulio, Ludovica Brofferio, Federica Riva-Rovedda, Paolo Cotogni and Valerio Dimonte
Healthcare 2024, 12(3), 398; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare12030398 - 4 Feb 2024
Viewed by 690
Abstract
Social and healthcare professionals often feel ill equipped to effectively engage in difficult conversations with patients, and poor proficiency negatively affects the quality of patient care. Printed educational resources (PERs) that provide guidance on sustaining complex clinical communication may be a source of [...] Read more.
Social and healthcare professionals often feel ill equipped to effectively engage in difficult conversations with patients, and poor proficiency negatively affects the quality of patient care. Printed educational resources (PERs) that provide guidance on sustaining complex clinical communication may be a source of support if thoughtfully designed. This study aimed to describe the key features of PERs in order to improve the quality of clinical communication according to the perspective of meaningful stakeholders. This was a descriptive secondary analysis of data collected by three remote focus group discussions that involved 15 stakeholders in the context of developing an educational booklet to support professionals in complex communication scenarios. Focus groups were audio-recorded and transcribed verbatim, and an inductive thematic analysis was performed. Three key features of PERs that aim toward quality improvement in clinical communication were identified: (1) having the potential to provide benefits in clinical practice; (2) facilitating, encouraging, and enticing reading; and (3) meeting the need of professionals to improve or update their knowledge. These findings suggest that PERs relevant to professionals’ clinical priorities and learning needs may make their efforts to apply learning in practice more likely and consequently result in improved healthcare quality. Full article
14 pages, 1146 KiB  
Article
An Exploration of Pediatricians’ Professional Identities: A Q-Methodology Study
by Mao-Meng Tiao, Yu-Che Chang, Liang-Shiou Ou, Chi-Fa Hung and Madalitso Khwepeya
Healthcare 2024, 12(2), 144; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare12020144 - 8 Jan 2024
Viewed by 779
Abstract
Professional identities may influence a wide range of attitudes, ethical standards, professional commitments and patient safety. This study aimed to explore the important elements that comprise pediatricians’ professional identities. A Q-methodology was used to identify the similarities and differences in professional identity. Forty [...] Read more.
Professional identities may influence a wide range of attitudes, ethical standards, professional commitments and patient safety. This study aimed to explore the important elements that comprise pediatricians’ professional identities. A Q-methodology was used to identify the similarities and differences in professional identity. Forty pediatricians were recruited from two tertiary referral hospitals in Taiwan. A list of statements was developed by five attending physicians and three residents. R software was used to analyze the Q-sorts to load the viewpoints and formulate the viewpoint arrays. Additional qualitative data—one-to-one personal interviews—were analyzed. Twenty-eight of forty pediatricians, 11 males and 17 females, with an average age of 39.9 (27–62) years, were associated with four viewpoints. We labeled the four viewpoints identified for professional identity as (1) professional recognition, (2) patient communication, (3) empathy and (4) insight. The professional recognition viewpoint comprised of youngest participants—28–36 years—with the majority as residents (77.8%), while the empathy viewpoint comprised the oldest participants—38–62 years—with all as attending physicians. All participants in the empathy and insight viewpoints were married. This study found professional identity to be a multifaceted concept for pediatricians, especially in the areas of professional recognition, patient communication, empathy and insight into patient care. Full article
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14 pages, 1375 KiB  
Article
Work Climate, Improved Communication, and Cohesive Work Linked with Patient Safety Culture: Findings from a Sports Medicine Hospital
by Syed Sajid Ahmed, Samantha Poblete van Rijswijk and Abdulaziz Farooq
Healthcare 2023, 11(24), 3109; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare11243109 - 6 Dec 2023
Viewed by 1719
Abstract
Background: This study aims to investigate the patient safety culture at a sports medicine hospital and explore the quality of healthcare and associated factors. Methods: In a cross-sectional study design, the Hospital Survey on Patient Safety Culture (HSOPC) tool was administered online among [...] Read more.
Background: This study aims to investigate the patient safety culture at a sports medicine hospital and explore the quality of healthcare and associated factors. Methods: In a cross-sectional study design, the Hospital Survey on Patient Safety Culture (HSOPC) tool was administered online among staff at a sports medicine hospital in Doha, Qatar. Out of 898 staff who received an email invitation, 504 participated (56.1%). Results: The results showed that 48.0% of the staff rated the patient safety grade as excellent and 37.5% as very good, totaling 85.5%. Factors associated with excellent or very good patient safety grades were management support OR 4.7 95% CI (1.8 to 12.3); team communication OR 3.0 95% CI (1.4 to 6.3), supervisor action supporting patient safety OR 3.5 95% CI (1.7 to 7.0) and other items related to work area such as working together: OR 3.0 95% CI (1.2 to 7.6), helping out busy areas OR 2.5 95% CI (1.1 to 5.5) and having good procedures and systems: OR 2.8 95% CI (1.4 to 5.8). Conclusions: Addressing management support, enhancing communication, and cohesive work within the work area facilitates a culture of trust that improves patient safety grades. Full article
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32 pages, 2150 KiB  
Article
Quality of Life and Wellbeing Parameters of Academic Dental and Nursing Personnel vs. Quality of Services
by Maria Antoniadou, Polyxeni Mangoulia and Pavlos Myrianthefs
Healthcare 2023, 11(20), 2792; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare11202792 - 21 Oct 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1485
Abstract
Quality of life (QOL) is based on one’s perception of one’s position in life with respect to one’s goals, expectations, standards, and concerns. It is also influenced by one’s culture and value system, workflow, and workplace situation; in turn, QOL influences the quality [...] Read more.
Quality of life (QOL) is based on one’s perception of one’s position in life with respect to one’s goals, expectations, standards, and concerns. It is also influenced by one’s culture and value system, workflow, and workplace situation; in turn, QOL influences the quality of service one is able to provide. In this study, we aim to report on dental and nursing academics’ QOL and wellbeing at the end of the third year of the COVID-19 pandemic. There are several studies on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on health professionals (nurses and dentists), but it is important to investigate their quality of life three years later; furthermore, knowledge about academic staff is very limited. The World Health Organization Quality of Life–BREF Scale (WHOQOL-BREF) tool, recording the physical, psychological, social, and environmental dimensions of QOL, was used. The WHOQOL-BREF was modified using a spiritual coaching/mentoring approach in a two-step design and validation procedure. The modified SHQOL-BREF (Spiritual Healthcare version) designed for this study was uploaded and filled in online during April–June 2023. The staff (N = 120, 75% female) of the Departments of Dentistry (44.2%) and Nursing (55.8%) of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens participated anonymously. QOL in terms of physical health was reported at a higher level (M = 72.2 points) compared to social relationships (M = 69 points), psychological health (M = 65 points), and environment (M = 59 points) (scores reported on a 0–100 scale). Overall, QOL was rated at 66 points, while satisfaction with one’s health was at 72 points. Job satisfaction (M1 = 3.2) and spirituality (M2 = 3.0) were reported at a medium level on a five-point scale, while personal beliefs and values were reported at a high level (M3 = 4.0). The four areas of QOL are associated with job satisfaction, personal beliefs, and spirituality. Participant age presented a significant moderate–strong effect on physical health (F (3.97) = 2.89, p < 0.05, η2p = 0.08) and on the environment (F (3.97) = 2.80, p < 0.05, η2p = 0.08), and marital status had a significant effect on social relationships (F (1.97) = 9.66, p < 0.05, η2p = 0.09). Married participants reported consistently higher levels of QOL compared to single participants, for all age groups. The department had a significant moderate effect on social relationships (F (1.97) = 5.10, p < 0.05, η2p = 0.05), and education had a significant moderate–strong effect on psychological health (F (2.97) = 3.74, p < 0.05, η2p = 0.07). PhD-level participants in both departments presented higher levels of psychological health compared to those with lower educational levels. Also, participants from the Department of Dentistry reported higher levels of social relationship QOL in all educational groups compared to the Department of Nursing. Overall, according to our findings, PhD participants generally had better psychological health. Those under 40 years of age had higher levels of physical health and environmental quality of life, while married participants and those from the Department of Dentistry had higher levels of social interactions than those from the Department of Nursing. Strategic planning on sustainability and QOL initiatives should be introduced after the COVID-19 pandemic for dental and nursing academic personnel to promote resilience and QOL scores. Enhancing the QOL of academic staff is essential for developing health promotion activities at universities and can help boost performance among staff and students. Full article
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20 pages, 8227 KiB  
Article
Improving Patient Safety in the X-ray Inspection Process with EfficientNet-Based Medical Assistance System
by Shyh-Wei Chen, Jyun-Kai Chen, Yu-Heng Hsieh, Wen-Hsien Chen, Ying-Hsiang Liao, You-Cheng Lin, Ming-Chih Chen, Ching-Tsorng Tsai, Jyh-Wen Chai and Shyan-Ming Yuan
Healthcare 2023, 11(14), 2068; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare11142068 - 19 Jul 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1365
Abstract
Patient safety is a paramount concern in the medical field, and advancements in deep learning and Artificial Intelligence (AI) have opened up new possibilities for improving healthcare practices. While AI has shown promise in assisting doctors with early symptom detection from medical images, [...] Read more.
Patient safety is a paramount concern in the medical field, and advancements in deep learning and Artificial Intelligence (AI) have opened up new possibilities for improving healthcare practices. While AI has shown promise in assisting doctors with early symptom detection from medical images, there is a critical need to prioritize patient safety by enhancing existing processes. To enhance patient safety, this study focuses on improving the medical operation process during X-ray examinations. In this study, we utilize EfficientNet for classifying the 49 categories of pre-X-ray images. To enhance the accuracy even further, we introduce two novel Neural Network architectures. The classification results are then compared with the doctor’s order to ensure consistency and minimize discrepancies. To evaluate the effectiveness of the proposed models, a comprehensive dataset comprising 49 different categories and over 12,000 training and testing sheets was collected from Taichung Veterans General Hospital. The research demonstrates a significant improvement in accuracy, surpassing a 4% enhancement compared to previous studies. Full article
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11 pages, 716 KiB  
Article
Self-Reported Reasons for Activity Limitations According to Age and Sex in Community-Dwelling Stroke Survivors
by Young-Ah Choi and Yeo Hyung Kim
Healthcare 2023, 11(10), 1420; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare11101420 - 14 May 2023
Viewed by 971
Abstract
We examined self-reported reasons for activity limitations among Korean community-dwelling stroke survivors, focusing on age and sex differences. Data from 1547 stroke survivors who participated in the Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey were analysed. The study outcomes were the self-reported reasons [...] Read more.
We examined self-reported reasons for activity limitations among Korean community-dwelling stroke survivors, focusing on age and sex differences. Data from 1547 stroke survivors who participated in the Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey were analysed. The study outcomes were the self-reported reasons for activity limitations, encompassing general medical factors and stroke-related problems. These reasons were compared by age (<65 vs. ≥65 years) and sex using a complex-sample chi-square test. Stroke survivors reported different musculoskeletal, medical, and neurological problems as reasons for activity limitations, which differed by age and sex. Older stroke survivors reported more problems related to dementia, memory loss, auditory problems, back or neck problems, arthritis, or leg pain than younger survivors. Women reported more psychiatric problems, headaches or dizziness, back or neck problems, arthritis, gastrointestinal problems, and dental or oral problems than men. Older and female stroke survivors reported a higher mean number of reasons for activity limitations compared to younger and male survivors. Thus, a tailored approach considering age and sex is necessary to help stroke survivors with activity limitations in the Korean community. This study highlights the importance of considering demographic factors when designing interventions to improve their quality of life. Full article
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7 pages, 2898 KiB  
Study Protocol
Study Protocol for the Evaluation of Multidisciplinary Medication Reconciliation Service in Adult Patients Undergoing Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery (The MERITS Study): A Single-Center Controlled before-and-after Study
by Soyoung Park, A Jeong Kim, Hyun-Woo Chae, Kyu-Nam Heo, Yookyung Kim, Sung Hwan Kim, Yoon Sook Cho, Hyun Joo Lee and Ju-Yeun Lee
Healthcare 2023, 11(12), 1778; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare11121778 - 16 Jun 2023
Viewed by 978
Abstract
Medication reconciliation (MR), which is widely implemented worldwide, aims to improve patient safety to reduce the medication errors during care transition. Despite its widespread use, MR has not yet been implemented in the Republic of Korea, and its effectiveness has not been studied. [...] Read more.
Medication reconciliation (MR), which is widely implemented worldwide, aims to improve patient safety to reduce the medication errors during care transition. Despite its widespread use, MR has not yet been implemented in the Republic of Korea, and its effectiveness has not been studied. We aimed to evaluate the impact of a multidisciplinary MR service in older patients undergoing thoracic and cardiovascular surgery. This is a single-center, prospective, controlled, before-and-after study of adult patients taking at least one chronic oral medication. Depending on the period of each patient’s participation, they will be allocated to an intervention group or control group. Patients in the intervention group will receive multidisciplinary MR, and those in the control group will receive usual care. The primary outcome is to assess the impact of the MR service on medication discrepancies between the best possible medication history and medication orders at care transition. Secondary outcomes include the incidence rate of medication discrepancies at each transition, the discrepancy rate between the sources of information, the impact of MR on medication appropriateness index score, drug-related problems, 30-day mortality, the emergency department visit rate, readmission rate after discharge, the rate and acceptability of pharmacists’ intervention during hospitalization, and patients’ satisfaction. Full article
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