Enhancing the Patient Safety Culture of ABSN Students through Instruction on Medical Error Recovery

Monday, 9 November 2015: 2:25 PM

Darlene Mary Burke, PhD, MS, MA, RN
School of Nursing, San Diego State University, San Diego, CA, USA

Attitudes toward patient safety are the foundation of patient safety culture. Nursing students begin to formulate their patient safety attitudes while in educational programs. Nursing faculty have been challenged in their efforts to enhance the patient safety culture of students because there is a lack of empirical evidence as to which teaching strategies positively affect student attitudes toward patient safety. The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between a 50-minute teaching module based upon the concept of medical error recovery and 9 dimensions of patient safety culture as measured by the Attitudes to Patient Safety Questionnaire (APSQ III). The guiding framework for the study was the reciprocal interactive theory of patient safety culture in nursing. The conceptual model used to illuminate the role of nurses in recovering medical errors in the educational intervention was the modified Eindhoven model of near-miss events. The sample comprised 4 student cohorts (N = 142) enrolled in an accelerated bachelor of science in nursing (ABSN) program at one university, with 4 participants lost to follow-up (n = 138). A quasi-experimental, nonequivalent control group, pretest/posttest design was used to compare mean attitude scores between the control (n = 75) group and the intervention group (n = 63) after statistically controlling for the pretest. ANCOVA revealed statistically higher mean attitude scores for the intervention group in 5 of 9 dimensions of patient safety culture with a small-medium effect size associated with the intervention: patient safety training, error inevitability, professional incompetence as error cause, patient's role in error, and importance of patient safety culture in curriculum. The results supported the use of a short-duration educational session on medical error recovery to enhance a subset of patient safety culture dimensions among ABSN students.