Home Company News Healthcare Safety Outcomes Are Improving but Patient and Workforce Experience Paints Mixed Picture, Press Ganey Report Finds

Healthcare Safety Outcomes Are Improving but Patient and Workforce Experience Paints Mixed Picture, Press Ganey Report Finds


Press Ganey, the leader in helping healthcare providers and health plans transform the Human Experience, today published its new report, “Safety in Healthcare 2024.” This first-of-kind report analyzes Press Ganey’s integrated dataset of safety outcomes, event reporting, workforce culture, and patient perceptions representing 12 million patient encounters, 1 million healthcare employees, as well as over 550,000 reported safety events in 2023.

While safety outcomes are on a promising trajectory and patient perceptions in outpatient settings are rising, nearly half of all staff and almost one-third of inpatients report low perceptions of safety. Reports of violence against nurses are also rising.

While many aspects of safety are moving in the right direction, some measures continue to be of concern and highlight critical gaps that leaders should address. Healthcare organizations that do best on safety embrace a holistic approach, with safety as a core value grounded in both patient and employee experiences. In doing so, they can foster a culture of high reliability, drive stronger, more consistent, and equitable safety outcomes, and make progress toward the goal of zero harm.

Dr. Tejal Gandhi,
Chief Safety and Transformation Officer at Press Ganey.

Key findings from the report include:

  • The gap in patient perceptions of safety in inpatient and outpatient settings is now 2.5x wider than pre-pandemic. While patients in medical practices and ambulatory settings felt substantially safer in 2023 (81.9%) compared to pre-pandemic levels (78.1%), perceptions of safety in hospitals continue to fall. In 2023, only 68.5% of hospital patients felt “very safe,” a 5.1% decline over the same period.
  • Following record lows in 2021, workplace safety culture is increasing. Employee views of safety within their organization have risen 1.2% over the last two years, including the belief that there is adequate unit staffing and that mistakes can be reported without fear, but nearly half of employees still report low perceptions of safety culturewith a large gap between how senior management (4.3) and nurses (3.36) perceive safety culture.
  • Reported assaults against nursing personnel saw a 5% increase YoY. In 2023, the rate of reported assault of nurses increased to 2.71 per 100 nursing personnel, from 2.59 in 2022.  While this might also indicate a growing willingness to report incidents, the number of reported assaults totaled 16,975 —around 1.89 per hour.
  • Safety outcomes show continued momentum. The biggest improvement was seen in catheter-associated urinary tract infection (CAUTI) which are now better than pre-pandemic levels, followed by ventilator-associated events (VAE), central line-associated bloodstream infections (CLABSI), and hospital-acquired pressure injuries (HAPI).

The insights presented in the “Safety in Healthcare 2024” report are derived from the industry’s largest integrated safety dataset, including the National Database of Nursing Quality Indicators (NDNQI), employee experience surveys, patient feedback, and Press Ganey’s Patient Safety Organization (PSO). They also incorporate an equity lens by studying differences based on factors such as race, age, and years of experience in role. For more information about Press Ganey and the “Safety in healthcare 2024” report, visit www.pressganey.com/safety-2024/

About Press Ganey

Press Ganey, the leading Human Experience (HX) healthcare performance improvement company, offers an integrated suite of solutions that address safety, clinical excellence, patient and member experience and workforce engagement. The company works with more than 41,000 healthcare facilities in its mission to reduce patient suffering and enhance caregiver resilience to improve the overall safety, quality, and experience of care. Press Ganey is a PG Forsta company.

About PG Forsta  

PG Forsta provides the technology and expertise to help organizations get a deeper, more complete understanding of the experiences of their audiences. The company powers the HX (Human Experience) Platform – a comprehensive experience and research technology platform that breaks down the silos between CX (Customer Experience), Employee Experience (EX), Patient Experience (PX) and Market Research. PG Forsta serves a variety of industries, including healthcare, financial services, hospitality, market research, professional services, retail, and technology.  

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