Health care organizations and professionals strive to create safe environments for patients; however, due to the complexity of the health care system, maintaining safety can be a challenge. Since nurses comprise the largest group of health care professionals, a great deal of responsibility falls in the hands of practicing nurses. Quality improvement (QI) measures and safety improvement plans are effective interventions to reduce medical errors and sentinel events such as medication errors. A 2000 Institute of Medicine (IOM) report indicated that almost one million people are harmed annually in the United States, (Kohn et al., 2000) and 210,000–440,000 die as a result of medical errors (Allen, 2013).
The role of the nurse includes identifying and explaining specific patient risk factors, incorporating evidence-based solutions to improving patient safety and coordinating care. A solid foundation of knowledge and understanding of safety organizations such as Quality and Safety Education for Nurses (QSEN), the Institute of Medicine (IOM), and The Joint Commission and its National Patient Safety Goals (NPSGs) program is vital to practicing nurses with regard to providing and promoting safe and effective patient care..