Trend: Large, small hospitals differ on safety issues

If you're part of a large hospital, are your safety practices--and results--likely to be different than those of smaller facilities? The answer is yes, according to a growing body of research.

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, for example, suggests that small, rural hospitals score higher on quality than large urban facilities. Among the biggest gaps between the two categories of hospital was performance around handoffs and traditions, with rural hospitals performing 22 percent better than urban facilities.

This gap occurs, in part, because handoffs pose different types of problems for large and small facilities, observers note. With larger facilities, coordination and communication between different departments is particularly difficult, says Marilyn Szekendi, RN, PhD, Patient Safety Leader at Northwestern Memorial Hospital (NMH) in Chicago.

To learn more about this trend:
- read this Health Leaders Media piece

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