Safety of Outpatient Health Care

May 17, 2024

Safety of Outpatient Health Care

Despite considerable emphasis on delivering safe care, substantial patient harm occurs. Although most care occurs in outpatient settings, research into adverse events (AE) in this setting remains sparse in comparison to acute care.

Seven percent had at least one AE, most commonly adverse drug events, and 23% were potentially preventable. Most AE originated from care in the physician’s office.

The conclusion was made that outpatient harm was relatively common and often serious. Adverse drug events were most frequent. Rates were higher among older adults. Interventions to curtail outpatient harm are urgently needed.

For more information about this study, go to the National Library of Medicine.