Developing Fluency with a Common Classification System

A common classification system helps ensure that all information, regardless of its source, is processed through the same channels as every other piece of the puzzle.

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While the basic tenants of all healthcare providers are more or less the same (that is, to improve and maintain the health, safety, and satisfaction of the patients they treat), the scope and severity of their needs differ greatly.

An ambulance service, for instance, thrives in an entirely separate environment than do physical therapists or mental health professionals. Likewise, the daily rigors brought on by continuous care of chronic patients add an entirely new set of struggles for primary care physicians, hospital staff, and other such healthcare professionals.

If healthcare were handled in isolated communities of care providers, this wouldn’t be much of an issue. However, healthcare follows many paths and encompasses the reach of various specialists, ancillary services, and supporting agents to run properly.

A patient that is treated in facility A today might be transferred miles away to facility B tomorrow, while facilities C, D, and E provide support and guidance from a distance. If these facilities all communicate in different healthcare languages, then treatment options, patient histories, and overall patient safety quickly become threatened. It is only through providing a fluent, universal language can healthcare providers hope to provide timely and effective care options for their patients.

A Common Classification System for All

When an incident in patient safety occurs, it is vital that healthcare providers, insurers, healthcare leaders, and clinicians be provided the means to communicate with one another clearly and quickly. If communication falters, so does the health of the patient. There is little room for error, and even less room for incoherence.

A common classification system helps ensure that all information, regardless of its source, is processed through the same channels as every other piece of the puzzle. By not having to wade through issues caused by identifying sources and the reshuffling of data, healthcare providers can make sure that their patient safety incidents are handled in a more unified and clear manner.

The Datix Common Classification System (CCS) was devised in 2001, bringing a standard classification to the many customers of Datix. This ground-breaking innovation introduced the potentially complex concept of incident classification in a simple manner, making it accessible to the wider healthcare community for the first time.

The CCS draws on the logic that underpins the World Health Organization’s conceptual framework for the international classification of patient safety incidents (WHO-ICPS) and the United States Department of Health and Human Services Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality Patient Safety Common Formats. All classifications included in the latest version of the CCS can be submitted to third parties, including patient safety firms.

Establishing a Precedent for Clarity

The greatest downfall to any healthcare provider might be confusion. This can be caused by several factors, and solutions can vary wildly from one instance to the next. But by establishing a precedent for clarity, these incidents of confusion can be assuaged on a large scale, and entire healthcare providers can learn to see and avoid their common causes.

Datix’s CCS acts as a foundation on which healthcare practices can evolve and reshape themselves to better fit growing needs and concerns. And a common classification system is the best way to guarantee the steady progression of these ideals, no matter the scale of a healthcare provider.