Patient safety is paramount

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While healthcare has brought huge benefits to mankind, it is not without its own challenges and risks.
Patient safety is a serious global public health issue and a critical component of healthcare quality. Unsafe patient care is associated with significant morbidity and mortality across the world.
Last year, the World Health Organization reported that 40 per cent of patients in primary and outpatient care around the world are harmed by medical errors. Another 10 per cent acquire infections in hospital settings.
Our country, which has little practical evidence of patient safety culture and associated factors, should make efforts to encourage and strengthen them.
Union Minister for Health and Sports Dr. Myint Htwe’s pledge to include patient safety in the national healthcare policy, which is being re-written, is a welcome step.
At the same time, we need to raise awareness on patient safety at health facilities and urge everyone to commit to making healthcare safer in the country.
When it comes to patient safety, we need to go deep into the causes of errors and weaknesses in efforts to prevent them in the future, rather than putting the blame on each other.
The existing guidelines and rules on patient safety should be updated to meet modern standards and should be made available for all health professionals and facilities.
Patient safety must remain paramount. Because, if we can’t provide surgical operations and post-surgical treatment in a systematic manner, patients can face associated risk factors which can lead to deaths.
We believe that our health professionals are doing their best at every step, starting from the time of consultation about the history of a patient to the day the patient is discharged from the hospital after recovery.
Healthcare still has a prevalent culture of silence. We should not hesitate to address medical errors.
Life is too fragile a thing to take chances. And it’s true, to err is human. But, to do as little as has been done in many years to reduce preventable harms is inexcusable.

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