Patient safety is the top priority of every hospital, health, or social care. An efficient and strong healthcare team can reduce the rate of injuries, and infection rates, and prevent mistakes. Numerous hazards and accidents occur every day at work.

Those responsible to ensure the safety of staff and patients must have vital information, knowledge, and training to prevent everyone.

This blog post will explain some major errors, injuries, accidents, and infections producing serious harm to the patient and healthcare staff.

The Size of the Problem

Various studies determine the nature and size of the problem, it is estimated that the chances of accidents leading to major errors, injuries, accidents, or infections began in the early 1970s.

An average of 250,000 deaths were recorded as a result of such incidents in the first decade of the 2000s in the US, according to the Meta-Analysis.

The statistics were alarming making people die from hospital errors, injuries, accidents, and infections. It is also seen that every 1 out of 25 patients develops some sort of infection in the hospital each year, that did not have to happen. Today, nearly 1000 people die due to preventable hospital errors.

Violence and aggression are also common health concerns seen in such environments among the healthcare staff. The aggressive patients or their relatives can create serious problems for the workers leading to an effect on the overall work environment.

This puts a huge duty on the responsible persons and upper hospital or social care management to take reasonable actions to control such issues from their organizations.

Common Causes of Medical Errors & Injuries

Below are the most common yet major causes of errors, injuries, accidents, or infections in a health care setting:

1.    Communication Issues

One of the most prominent issues reported by many people is improper or poor communication that misleads to major accidents and injuries.

Whether it is verbal communication or written, these issues can arise among doctors, medical staff, or patients. This in turn leads to numerous medical errors.

2.    Inadequate Information

A lot of significant errors, accidents, or injuries occur due to inadequate information. Proper information flow is important in the healthcare sector to undertake the work safely.

There are various sharps injuries, chemical spillage, or other chemical hazards that could occur within the health and social care setting.

Managers and employers must have effective techniques to instruct, educate, and guide their staff members to help them prevent accidents. They can offer them training like sharps training, spill kit training (bodily fluids, chemical spillage), or hazardous substances training.

This will ensure they have a good understanding to work safely as well as abide by the safety regulations.

3.    Human Errors

Human errors and problems occur when healthcare standards, processes, and procedures are not followed at work. Some of the common issues include improper documentation and labeling of specimens, and knowledge-based errors due to lack of information, knowledge, and guidance.

4.    Patient-related Issues

These errors may include inappropriate patient identification, patient assessment, failure to obtain consent, and insufficient patient education. These errors can lead to major accidents or injuries.

5.    Technical Issues

Technical failures like such as complications or failure to operate medical devices or equipment can result in big issues and damages. Those operating such tools and gadgets need to be fully trained to undertake the work safely.

6.    Inadequate Policies

Inadequate policies, procedures, and processes are also a major issue of concern that can lead to the failure of safety practices which in turn can cause numerous accidents, errors, injuries, or infections to the patients, workers, or those managing them.

Ways to Control & Mitigate the Risk If an Error Occurs in Healthcare Environment

There are numerous actions duty holders can take in an event of a medical emergency:

  • Talk to someone immediately to provide the immediate care a person needs
  • Report the incident as soon as possible to get professional assistance from the healthcare staff
  • Report/discuss the issue in a respectful & assertive manner
  • Use a systematic way to report any error or issue to control and minimize it

How to Improve Patient Safety?

Patient safety is nothing to take lightly. There are the following ways health care practitioners and staff can improve patient safety within their work environment:

  • Use monitoring technology to ensure the right procedures are followed
  • Validate all the medical procedures
  • Promote a team atmosphere to involve everyone in the process
  • Ensure that patients understand their treatments


Health and social care sectors are more prone to some major errors if not taken seriously can result in accidents and injuries that can put employers and businesses in danger. This piece of content has covered some of the main reasons that medical errors or injuries can arise and how the duty holders can help control and prevent them.