How to promote patient safety with positive patient identification

Mar 16, 2016

In honor of Patient Safety Awareness Week, we at Imprivata wanted to share a few tips on how positive patient identification can help keep patients safe. Patient safety goes beyond safe medical treatment - healthcare organizations must ensure that patients’ privacy, data, and identities are protected. Positive patient identification provides that protection.

A registration process that incorporates positive patient identification can protect patients’ identities and improve patient safety by:

1.Correctly identifying patients

Research shows that 7-10% of patients are misidentified during health record searches. With 6% of these instances resulting in an adverse event, patient safety is at risk when patients are misidentified at registration. An effective patient identification solution matches patients with their correct medical records at registration, leading to smoother hospital visits and more effective treatments.

2.Reducing medical identity fraud

Approximately 2.3 million Americans were impacted by medical identity theft in 2014. Many of those patients now have incorrect or incomplete medical records and are dealing with the financial and legal burdens of identity theft. The best patient identification solutions protect against medical identity theft by confirming patients’ identities and creating a unique link between individual patients and their unique medical records.

3.Reducing inaccurate medical records (like duplicates and overlays)

An AHIMA study found that hospitals have an 8-12% duplicate medical record rate. Duplicate medical records can harm patient safety because duplicates records often include incomplete medical information that can potentially lead to ineffective medical treatments and adverse events. Leading patient identification solutions create a 1:1 link between patients and their records, reducing the likelihood of duplicates and improving patient data integrity.

Every healthcare organization’s goal is to promote patient safety and deliver excellent care. The first step to achieving this goal lies at the registration desk. Registering patients with a positive patient identification solution helps healthcare organizations protect patients from the dangers of misidentification and identity fraud. Patient safety is a crucial component of healthcare, and we are proud to protect patients with our positive patient identification solution, Imprivata PatientSecure.