N2 - Assignment Example

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According to the Health and Safety Executive (2009), human factors are “environmental, organizational and job factors, and human and individual characteristics which influence behavior at work in a way which can affect health and safety (p. 5).” These factors need to be…
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Human Factors in the Delivery of Quality Care According to the Health and Safety Executive (2009), human factors are “environmental, organizational and job factors, and human and individual characteristics which influence behavior at work in a way which can affect health and safety (p. 5).” These factors need to be closely regulated to ensure that the care being provided is safe and effective. They are divided into three groups: The individual, the job, and the organization.
The factors concerning the individual are all about each person’s skills, abilities, and personalities. Each person has a capacity to contribute or be a detriment to the care of patients due to their personalities and talents. The skills and talents can be honed and developed to contribute to the care of the patient, while the personality of the person has to be taken into account when making decisions of a person’s role in patient care to maximize the good that person can do.
The job factor is all about finding the right task for the right people. It means matching up jobs that require certain skill to someone proficient in that skill. It makes the job easier and more effective for everyone. To do this, one must know about the person taking care of the patient as well as the patient himself/herself. Fitting the job to a person’s strengths is not just a matter of making it easier. It is a wise use of resources which would be invaluable, especially in a hospital where lives are at stake.
The organization is the interactions and the standards set between the health care staff. It is composed of the health and safety culture, the leadership system, and the communications of the health care providers. This is important because even if the right people are available for the right jobs, a lack of coordination from the organization could undo such advantages.
Taken as a whole, The field of Human Factors are variables that define the relationships between people, work, and the systems governing them in a specific area (Carstens, 2005, p. 83). The effective manipulation of these factors in a hospital setting is matters of life and death, thus are sound candidates for careful scrutiny and application.
In the medical-surgical setting, we can see many instances where human factors contribute to the welfare of patients. Sadly, mistakes are unavoidable, and it is here where we find the limits of the human factors, as well as areas to find improvement. Surgical practice is one of the best situations wherein human factors are apparent, and the effects are immediately appreciable. The individual is defined by the skill of the surgeon, the initiative of the nurse, and the competence of the anesthesiologist; the job is suited to them since most of the personnel in surgery are specialized in the field, depending on the case of the patient; while the organization is apparent in that safe surgical practice itself clearly dictates the protocol and the responsibilities of those involved. Cuschieri (2006) mentioned that parts of it were an organizational structure with efficient healthcare delivery, cooperation and management, evidence-based practice, staff trainings, proper technology, proficiency, and proper incident reporting and disclosure systems. If any of these factors fail, most likely there would be errors that may or may not endanger the lives of the patients. As a part of the professions dedicated to preserving life, that is a chance too expensive to take for granted.
Carstens, D. S. (2005). Patient safety technology gap: Minimizing errors in healthcare through technology innovation. Systemics, Cybernetics and Informatics, 3(2), 80-84.
Cuschieri, A. (2006). Nature of human error. Annals of Surgery, 244(5), 642-648.
Health and Safety Executive (2009). Reducing error and influencing behaviour. Retrieved from Read More
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