Thursday, March 28, 2013

What’s New in the NAHAM Joint Commission Survey Toolkit

Check out TJC Survey Toolkit and the What’s New section.  The Toolkit is accessible by NAHAM members with a valid username and password.  Go to to sign in.  Look under “Government Relations” on the left-side banner.

2013 National Patient Safety Goals

The Joint Commission has revised its 2013 National Patient Safety Goals for Hospitals, effective January 1, 2013. 

The new goals for hospitals may be found here:, as well as through the link provided in the Toolkit section V, TJC Resource Link. 

In addition its 15 goals, including Goal 1 (Improve the accuracy of patient identification.), the 2013 also includes Universal Protocol for Preventing Wrong Site, Wrong Procedure (UP.01.01.01: Conduct a pre-procedure verification process.).  As a goal, among its principles are “wrong-person, wrong-site, and wrong procedure surgery can and must be prevented.” (Emphasis added by NAHAM News.)

New R3 Report focuses on patient flow

The Joint Commission released “R3 Report Issue 4” that provides the requirement, rationale and references for the updated Leadership standards that emphasize the importance of patient flow in hospitals, in particular the patient flow through the emergency department.  See Toolkit section V, TJC Resource Links.

The Joint Commission notes that “Although overcrowding and patient boarding in the emergency department have drawn widespread attention, the revised standards make clear that the flow of patients must be managed systematically throughout the entire hospital.” (Emphasis added by NAHAM News.)

The R3 Report addresses three key points: 1) The use of data and metrics to better manage patient flow as a hospital-wide concern; 2) The safe provision of care for patients when boarding occurs; and 3) Mitigating risks experienced by patients with psychiatric emergencies who are boarded in the emergency department. 

New “Speak Up” video focuses on managing pain

Hopefully NAHAM News readers are familiar with The Joint Commission’s Speak Up series.  The most recent release is "Speak Up: About Your Pain," a 60-second animated video intended to illustrate the reasons why it is important for patients to speak up about their pain.  As with other videos and material offered through the Speak Up series, it is also intended to provide easy-to-understand examples for the general public.

"Speak Up: About Your Pain" explains that proper pain management can help patients feel better and heal faster, and encourages everyone to: 1) Make sure their pain is assessed by a health care provider; 2) Describe the pain they are experiencing to their caregivers; 3) Take appropriate steps to alleviate pain instead of trying to "tough it out;" 4) Ask their doctor or other caregiver about an alternative pain treatment if medication causes side effects; and 5) Inquire about other methods for treating their pain, such as physical therapy, acupuncture or massage therapy. 

The new video may be found here:, as well as through the link provided in the Toolkit section V, TJC Resource Links.

Readers should check out the entire series. “Speak Up: About Your Pain” is the eighth installment of the Speak Up video series. Previous videos emphasize the importance of speaking up and asking questions about: health care, preventing infection, taking and managing medication safely, preparing for a doctor’s office appointment, reducing the risk of falling, and understanding patient rights. There is also a video produced for children that encourages them to speak up about their own health care. 

About TJC Speak Up Series
The Speak Up campaign urges all patients to take a role in preventing health care errors by becoming active, involved and informed participants on the health care team:

Speak up if you have questions or concerns. If you still don’t understand, ask again. It’s your body and you have a right to know.

Pay attention to the care you get. Always make sure you’re getting the right treatments and medicines by the right health care professionals. Don’t assume anything.

Educate yourself about your illness. Learn about the medical tests you get, and your treatment plan.

Ask a trusted family member or friend to be your advocate (advisor or supporter).

Know what medicines you take and why you take them. Medicine errors are the most common health care mistakes.

Use a hospital, clinic, surgery center, or other type of health care organization that has been carefully checked out. For example, The Joint Commission visits hospitals to see if they are meeting The Joint Commission’s quality standards.

Participate in all decisions about your treatment. You are the center of the health care team.

Find more information about the Speak Up program and free downloadable files of all the Speak Up videos, brochures and posters (including Spanish language versions) on The Joint Commission website:

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