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PSA Supports Reporting Serious and Sentinel Events

PSA MEDIA RELEASE February 20, 2008 For immediate use

PSA Supports Reporting Serious and Sentinel Events at Hospitals

The PSA supports today's release of the serious and sentinel events report as it provides information that staff can share to make our world-class public hospitals even better.

The PSA has 15,000 members working for the country's 21 district health boards in a wide range of jobs. These include mental and public health nurses, physiotherapists and occupational therapists, clerical and administrative staff, anaesthetic and dental technicians and vision and hearing testers.

"PSA members working for DHBs are dedicated professionals who work hard to provide the best care they can for the public of New Zealand," says PSA National Secretary, Richard Wagstaff.

The report shows that staff at our public hospitals successfully treated more than 834,000 patients in the 2006-2007 financial year. It also indicates that the rate of adverse events at New Zealand hospitals is lower than in Australia, Britain, and Denmark.

"The report also shows that mistakes were made and hospital staff know the grief caused when things go wrong with a patient's treatment," says Richard Wagstaff.

"This provides a powerful motivation to learn from these mistakes so they can work hard to prevent a re-occurrence," says Richard Wagstaff.

The PSA supports the release of this report and plans to continue making information about serious and sentinel events available to clinicians and the public in the future.

"Releasing this report and making this information available on an on-going basis appears to be a world first," says Richard Wagstaff.

"It will provide hospital staff throughout the country with valuable information they can share and use to improve the treatment and care of patients," says Richard Wagstaff.

ends

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