Benefit cost analysis compares the amount of savings gained through an investment in patient safety and is reflected as a ratio: The numerator is the benefit or avoided cost; the denominator the expense associated with the intervention. A ratio greater than one indicates a net positive return from the investment.
Benefit or Avoided Cost
Cost effectiveness measures the cost per avoided adverse event. The numerator is the expense of the intervention; the denominator the anticipated number of avoided adverse events.
Cost of Intervention
The financial aspects of patient safety programs are becoming increasingly important because this critical element of health care is receiving an increased investment of resources. This investment may take the form of employing new dedicated patient safety staff members, the procurement of new infrastructure or equipment, or funding for training, or new root cause analysis investigations.
Along with providing training on how best to use financial tools to quantify the impact of proposed actions, NCPS is helping PSMs measure the cost of past adverse events and close calls. This includes preparing them for questions to be asked by management or decision-makers, such as:
While the goal of patient safety is to prevent harm to patients, it is important to make sure that the resources used are expended as efficiently as possible. By so doing, the biggest benefit can be realized by our patients.