8 Patient Safety Facts for Patient Safety Week

8 Patient Safety Facts for Patient Safety Week

Published: March 12th, 2021

National Patient Safety Week is March 14-20. This week is dedicated to growing awareness about patient safety, learning more about healthcare safety, and recognizing the work already being achieved.

While much progress has been made in patient safety over the past couple of decades, estimates suggest that medical harm is still a leading cause of death worldwide. In fact, research indicates that nearly 400,000 deaths occur in the United States each year as a result of errors or preventable harm.3 The following statistics will help bring further awareness to the importance of continued patient safety efforts.

  1. One in every ten patients is harmed while receiving hospital care. Harm is caused by a range of adverse events, with nearly 50% being considered preventable. 1 
  1. Globally, as many as 4 in 10 patients are harmed in primary and outpatient health care. The most detrimental errors are related to diagnosis, prescription and the use of medicines.1 
  1. The occurrence of adverse events due to unsafe care is a leading cause of death and disability across the world. 
  1. Roughly two-thirds of all adverse events result from unsafe care. 1
  1. Unsafe use of medication and medication errors are a leading cause of avoidable harm in health care systems across the world.
  1. Hospital infections affect 14 out of every 100 patients admitted. Simple, low-cost prevention methods such as proper hand hygiene could prevent nearly 50% of these.1
  1. More than 1 million patients annually die from surgical complications. Seven million people a year experience disabling surgical complications. 1
  1. Investments in reducing patient harm can lead to significant financial savings, and more importantly, better patient outcomes. 2


The purpose of Patient Safety Day is to recognize and promote patient safety by increasing public awareness and engagement and taking action to improve the safety of healthcare for patients, caregivers, and the healthcare workforce. Ongoing training and education are cost-effective and essential steps towards improving safety in patient care.


If your organization is seeking safety or compliance training contact the experts at MedSafe. MedSafe is the leading one-stop resource in providing safety and compliance training programs in the United States. We offer a wide variety of online training courses.

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  1. https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/patient-safety
  2. http://www.ihi.org/Engage/Initiatives/Patient-Safety-Awareness-Week/Pages/default.aspx
  3. https://journals.lww.com/journalpatientsafety/Full...