Delay in discharge of psychiatric patients frequently is attributed to the lack of available community resources, or to the unwillingness of the patient or his family to accept discharge or transfer to another facility. The role of the psychiatric system itself rarely is mentioned as a factor. A study of 138 psychiatric patients in a Canadian community hospital in 1978 showed that 35 per cent were judged to be delayed in their discharge. By far the greatest source of delay was the administration of the various psychiatric services within the system. Delayed patients were found to be statistically similar to nondelayed patients, except for the delayed patients tendency to be poorer and to be overrepresented on two of the six wards studied. The cost implications of the delays in discharge are discussed, as are suggestions for solving the problems within the administrative framework.
The Canadian Forces' (CF) deployable hospital, 1 Canadian Field Hospital, was deployed to Haiti after an earthquake that caused massive devastation. Two surgical teams performed 167 operations over a 39-day period starting 17 days after the index event. Most operations were unrelated to the earthquake. Replacing or supplementing the destroyed local surgical capacity for a brief period after a disaster can be a valuable contribution to relief efforts. For future humanitarian operations/disaster response missions, the CF will study the feasibility of accelerating the deployment of surgical capabilities.
We have previously studied system failures involved in medication errors using a limited number of root cause analyses as source. The aim of this study was to describe a larger number of medication errors with respect to harm, involved medicines and involved system problems - thus providing information for the development of IT-based decision support. We evaluated 3,520 medication error reports derived from 12 months of consecutive reporting from 13 hospitals in the Capital Region of Denmark. We found 0.65% errors with serious harm and 16% with moderate harm. A small number of medicines were involved in the majority of the errors. The problems in the medication error process were heterogeneous. Some were related to specific medicines and others were related to the computerized order entry system. Accordingly decision support targeted at specific medicines and improved IT systems are part of the continuing work to reduce the frequency of medication errors.
Andreeva Bay in northwest Russia hosts one of the former coastal technical bases of the Northern Fleet. Currently, this base is designated as the Andreeva Bay branch of Northwest Center for Radioactive Waste Management (SevRAO) and is a site of temporary storage (STS) for spent nuclear fuel (SNF) and other radiological waste generated during the operation and decommissioning of nuclear submarines and ships. According to an integrated expert evaluation, this site is the most dangerous nuclear facility in northwest Russia. Environmental rehabilitation of the site is currently in progress and is supported by strong international collaboration. This paper describes how the optimization principle (ALARA) has been adopted during the planning of remediation work at the Andreeva Bay STS and how Russian-Norwegian collaboration greatly contributed to ensuring the development and maintenance of a high level safety culture during this process. More specifically, this paper describes how integration of a system, specifically designed for improving the radiological safety of workers during the remediation work at Andreeva Bay, was developed in Russia. It also outlines the 3D radiological simulation and virtual reality based systems developed in Norway that have greatly facilitated effective implementation of the ALARA principle, through supporting radiological characterisation, work planning and optimization, decision making, communication between teams and with the authorities and training of field operators.