PS 105 Lesson 1: Responding to an Adverse Event: A Step-by-Step Approach
In the minutes and hours after a patient has an adverse event, you may not have all the facts about what happened. In this lesson, you’ll learn what to say to patients — and how to say it — immediately after such an event occurs. Because, as you'll see through several examples, communication is important. You’ll also learn who should handle this initial communication and who else may need to be notified about the event. 
Estimated Time of Completion: 30 minutes
Learning Objectives
After completing this lesson, you will be able to:
1. Explain why communicating after adverse events is difficult but essential.
2. Describe four immediate steps you should take when something goes wrong in a patient's care.
3. Give an example of a compassionate way to share bad news with a patient.
4. Identify common reasons why patients file lawsuits against health care providers.
Contributors
Author(s):
Frank Federico, RPh, Vice President/Senior Patient Safety Expert, Institute for Healthcare Improvement View Profile
Allan Frankel, MD, Patient Safety and Reliability Expert, Safe and Reliable Healthcare View Profile
Editor(s):
Laura Fink, Senior Managing Editor, Institute for Healthcare Improvement View Profile
Reviewer(s):
Barbara Edson, RN, MBA, MHA, VP, Clinical Quality, Health Research & Educational Trust (HRET) View Profile
Lucian Leape, MD, Adjunct Professor of Health Policy, Harvard School of Public Health View Profile
Wendy Madigosky, MD, MSPH, Director, Foundations of Doctoring Curriculum, University of Colorado Anchutz Medical Center View Profile
Liam Shields, Staff Nurse/ Early Clinical Career Fellow, University of Dundee View Profile
Requirements
You must be a registered IHI.org user to take this lesson.
You must achieve a minimum score of 75% to successfully complete this lesson.