Patient Safety Culture: A Review of the Nursing Home Literature and Recommendations for Practice

Ann Longterm Care. 2008 Mar;16(3):18-22.


Patient safety culture (PSC) is a critical factor in creating high-reliability health-care organizations. Most PSC research studies to date have been conducted in acute care settings; however, nursing home studies have recently begun to appear in the literature. Nursing homes differ from hospitals in a number of ways, including the population they serve, the medical model of care, and having the vast majority of direct care provided by non-licensed certified nursing assistants. Research has shown that nursing home PSC differs in important ways from PSC in acute care institutions. Recent PSC studies conducted in nursing homes and related quality and safety research can guide recommendations for nursing homes wishing to evaluate their own PSC. Relationships between PSC measurement, quality improvement, and workforce issues are potentially important and may influence clinical outcomes.