Approximately 24 million people--8.5% of the U.S. population--are defined as having Limited English Proficiency (LEP). Research suggests that among those who experience medical errors, LEP patients are more likely to be harmed, the harm is more likely to be serious, and the cause of harm is more frequently due to communication errors. With support from The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, teams from the Disparities Solutions Center at Massachusetts General Hospital and Abt Associates conducted research and developed a Hospital Guide and TeamSTEPPS® LEP Training Module for interprofessional care teams so that hospitals can better identify and prevent medical errors in patients with limited-English proficiency. These are the first patient safety tools specifically designed to meet the safety needs of LEP patients. This panel presentation will provide an overview of the research findings that served as a foundation for the development of these tools, as well an overview of the key recommendations of the Hospital Guide and a preview of the TeamSTEPPS Module.
To develop the Hospital Guide and TeamSTEPPS Module, we used a mixed methods approach that included: 1) qualitative interviews with frontline staff and leadership at three hospitals; 2) an interpreter patient safety pilot (interpreters were asked to document patient safety issues they witnessed); and 3) a Town Hall meeting with key leaders in patient safety to identify best practices for preventing, reporting, and documenting medical errors for LEP patients.
Key components of the Hospital Guide include: 1) common causes of medical errors for LEP patients; 2) high risk scenarios for LEP patients; 3) role of behaviors and communication in medical errors for LEP patients; and 4) strategies to better identify and prevent medical errors in LEP patients. Validation of the Hospital Guide included key informant interviews with leaders in quality and safety at nine unique hospitals across the country. Leaders felt the Guide would have a positive and important impact on the broader field of quality and safety by “guiding tactics” and providing “a map telling us where to go.”
Team STEPPS LEP Training Module
TeamSTEPPS is a system to improve the quality, safety and efficiency of health care through improved team communication. The TeamSTEPPS Module includes videos, a slide presentation and structured communication tools and exercises. Pilot-test results suggest that the TeamSTEPPS Module is simple and flexible enough to be implemented in a variety of settings. The intervention can also serve as a support or catalyst for change such as the addition or efficient re-allocation of interpreter resources. The TeamSTEPPS Module brings culturally and linguistically appropriate services into the mainstream patient safety effort by showing how team-based patient safety approaches can be adapted to meet the needs of linguistically and culturally diverse patients.
The Hospital Guide and TeamSTEPPS® LEP training module will provide guidance and action-oriented tools for hospitals to address safety issues for LEP patients. Implementation of these tools can help hospitals reduce medical errors for LEP and culturally diverse patients.
Presentation Information:Program: Poster Presentations (Main Conference)
Primary Category: Organizational Cultural Competence
Subtopics: Patient safety, Limited English Proficient, Implementing disparity reduction programs
Region Addressed by Presentation: National