Assessment of patient safety culture in private and public hospitals in Peru

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Abstract

Objective:

To assess the patient safety culture in Peruvian hospitals from the perspective of healthcare professionals, and to test for differences between the private and public healthcare sectors. Patient safety is defined as the avoidance and prevention of patient injuries or adverse events resulting from the processes of healthcare delivery.

Design:

A non-random cross-sectional study conducted online.

Setting:

An online survey was administered from July to August 2016, in Peru. This study reports results from Lima and Callao, which are the capital and the port region of Peru.

Participants:

A total of 1679 healthcare professionals completed the survey. Participants were physicians, medical residents and nurses working in healthcare facilities from the private sector and public sector.

Main outcomes:

Assessment of the degree of patient safety and 12 dimensions of patient safety culture in hospital units as perceived by healthcare professionals.

Results:

Only 18% of healthcare professionals assess the degree of patient safety in their unit of work as excellent or very good. Significant differences are observed between the patient safety grades in the private sector (37%) compared to the public sub-sectors (13-15%). Moreover, in all patient safety culture dimensions, healthcare professionals from the private sector give more favorable responses for patient safety, than those from the public sub-systems. The most significant difference in support comes from patient safety administrators through communication and information about errors.

Conclusions:

Overall, the degree of patient safety in Peru is low, with significant gaps that exist between the private and the public sectors.

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