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Specimen Error Study Toolkit
Laboratory testing provides essential information used by providers in medical decision making with an estimated 60–70% of these decisions based on laboratory test results. Patient safety events involving specimens can be precursors to serious mistakes, including diagnostic errors and inappropriate treatments. While mix-ups and mishaps do happen in laboratories, literature suggests that the majority of specimen events actually occur outside the lab. In fact, errors occurring in the Pre-analytical Phase of testing, like mislabeling and inaccurate patient identification, account for 68.2% of all specimen events.
The good news is that specimen errors are believed to be highly preventable, and effective interventions based on strong policies, clear feedback, and relevant education do not need to be resource intensive. After analyzing nearly 3,000 specimen events collected over four years, American Data Network Patient Safety Organization noted that 77% of specimen incidents either almost certainly or likely could have been prevented.
Thus, ADNPSO conducted a Specimen Focused Study in order to positively impact Patient Care, Satisfaction, Quality/Safety and Finance. The study was designed to help healthcare professionals, both inside and outside the laboratory, better understand why specimen events happen and how they can collaborate to decrease errors across the testing process.
This toolkit includes many of the materials developed by ADNPSO for participants in the study.
EDITABLE Detailed Process Maps for Every Phase in the Specimen Process
Specimen Study Blueprint Checklist
Anatomy of a Specimen Error Infographic
Press Release Template
Specimen Study Reference List
Specimen Study Information Sheet
Event Reporting Application Information Sheet