Minnesota Hospital Association


December 08, 2014

Minnesota hospitals recognized for excellence in medication-use safety

ST. PAUL, Minn. – The Minnesota Hospital Association (MHA) was named a finalist for the 2014 Award for Excellence in Medication-Use Safety from the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) Research and Education Foundation. The award recognizes innovative initiatives to improve medication safety.   

MHA and its member hospitals were recognized for the “Road Map to a Medication Safety Program,” which provides evidence-based recommendations/standards for Minnesota hospitals in the development of a comprehensive medication safety program. The Road Map is a tool to focus hospital’s attention and resources on adverse drug events, specifically related to anticoagulants, diabetes medications and opioids. In the first two years, the Road Map helped Minnesota hospitals make significant progress in reducing adverse drug events. It is estimated that 1,977 fewer events have occurred since the Road Map inception. This is equivalent to 77 fewer events per month or 1.6 fewer events per day. 

“Medication safety is a top priority for Minnesota hospitals and we are proud of the work and commitment of hospitals to provide patient-centered care and prevent adverse drug events,” said Tania Daniels, MHA vice president of patient safety.   

The Road Map employs an innovative, systematic call-to-action framework designed to prevent patient harm by providing both clinical best practices and an organizational infrastructure to achieve quality measurement goals and embed sustainable best practices.   

Participating hospitals have been able to make tangible, concrete changes based on the Road Map, which resulted in clinical improvements. Examples include decreasing Naloxone use by redesigning order sets to address opioid tolerant and opioid naïve patients; and improving communication between the hospital electronic medical record and the outpatient anticoagulation clinic that decreased inpatient elevated INRs, a measure of the time it takes blood to clot.     

“The model brought together hospital pharmacists and other health care professionals from both urban and rural hospitals in a collaborative, transparent safety improvement process,” said Steve Meisel, Pharm.D. CPPS, director of patient safety at Fairview Health Services, and the MHA Advisory Group chair. “The group was able to set aside competition, learn from one another and work together for sustainable statewide improvement.”   

The Minnesota Hospital Association represents 143 hospitals and health systems that provide quality care for patients and meet the need of their communities.   # # #