National Patient Safety Goals



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9AM - 5PM CST (M-F)

Faculty: Erin Azuse, RN BSN


Successful Completion: Complete entire module, complete the exam with a passing score of 80% or better, and complete the evaluation form.


Estimated Time to Complete Activity: 90 minutes.


CEUs: HIPAA Exams is authorized by IACET to offer 0.1 CEUs for this program.  CEU Information


Free Certification of Completion available instantly for download or printing upon successful completion.


This course covers the National Patient Safety Goals

Course includes a video and audio component with stand-alone exam


What Are the 7 National Patient Safety Goals? 

The National Patient Safety Goals (NPSGs) are set by The Joint Commission and vary depending on the specific healthcare setting (e.g., hospitals, ambulatory care, nursing care centers). For hospitals, the general NPSGs include: 

1. Identify Patients Correctly 

Ensure that patients are accurately identified using at least two identifiers before any care, treatment, or service is provided. For example, utilize the patient's name and birth date to guarantee that everyone receives the appropriate medication and care. 

2. Improve Staff Communication 

Promote timely and efficient communication among the right staff person, especially concerning critical test results. 

3. Use Medicines Safely 

Emphasize correct labeling on all medicines, containers, and solutions, carefully document prescribed medication, and add precautions for blood-thinning medications. 

Determine the drugs a patient is currently taking and cross-check them with any new prescriptions provided.  Provide patients with written details about their prescribed drugs, ensuring they are aware of which ones to continue at home. Advise patients to always carry a current list of their medications during doctor visits. 

4. Use Alarms Safely 

Ensure that medical equipment alarms are heard and responded to promptly.

5. Prevent Infection 

Follow established guidelines for hand hygiene and infection prevention from authoritative bodies like the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO).

6. Identify Patient Safety Risks 

Assess and address patient risks, particularly related to self-harm and suicide. Minimize the potential for suicide by assessing the environment to pinpoint elements that might facilitate suicide attempts. 

For patients with a heightened risk of suicide, implement protective measures. These might include continuous individual monitoring, removing items that could be used for self-harm, inspecting objects visitors bring into the room, and employing secure transport methods when transferring patients within the hospital. 

7. Prevent Mistakes in Surgery 

Implement procedures to confirm the correct surgical site, procedure, and patient, with a final check before surgery begins. The Universal Protocol for Preventing Wrong Site, Wrong Procedure, and Wrong Person Surgery™ aims to prevent errors related to performing surgery on the wrong site, conducting the wrong procedure, or operating on the wrong person. 

It applies to all surgeries and non-surgical invasive procedures, guaranteeing that the right operation is performed on the right individual and at the proper site on their body. Always mark the intended surgical site on the patient. Before beginning the procedure, take a moment to ensure no errors are being made.

What Are National Patient Safety Goals Based On? 

National Patient Safety Goals are objectives and guidelines customized for seven distinct healthcare institutions, based on patient safety insights provided by experts and stakeholders. 

What Is the Purpose of the National Patient Safety Goals? 

National Patient Safety Goals was founded to raise the standard of care in the medical industry. The main purposes of the NPSGs are: 

  • Prioritize Patient Safety: To highlight and address specific high-priority patient safety issues that healthcare organizations face.
  • Provide a Guided Framework: To offer healthcare organizations clear directives on actions and strategies to address common safety concerns.
  • Promote Best Practices: To ensure that healthcare organizations use evidence-based best practices in their operations to prevent errors.
  • Enhance Communication and Collaboration: To foster better communication both within healthcare teams and between providers and patients.
  • Continuously Improve: By regularly updating the goals based on new data and research, NPSGs aim to ensure that healthcare organizations remain responsive to the ever-evolving landscape of patient safety challenges.

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Learning Objectives

Medical Reps Needing Credentialing and Health Care Workers

Target Audience

Medical Reps Needing Credentialing and Health Care Workers

Table of Contents

National Patient Safety Goals (NPSG)

Table of Contents:

  • National Patient Safety Goals
  • Legal Notice
  • Objectives
  • What is the Purpose of the National Patient Safety Goals?
  • Improve Accuracy of Patient Identification
  • Improves the Effectiveness of Communication Among Caregivers
  • Improves the Safety of Using Medications
  • Reduce the Harm Associated with Clinical Alarm Systems
  • Reduce the Risk of Health Care-Associated Infections
  • Identify Safety Risks Inherent in Patient Population
  • Universal Protocol for Preventing Wrong Site, Wrong Procedure, and Wrong Person Surgery
  • End of Course Exam

Course Content Example 1:

What is the Purpose of the National Patient Safety Goals?

The National Patient Safety Goals (NPSG) was created in 2002 to address specific areas in patient safety

Every year a panel of safety experts, the Patient Safety Advisory Group, advises the Joint Commission on emerging issues in patient safety

  • The group consists of nurses, physicians, pharmacists, risk managers, and others with hands-on experience addressing patient safety issues in various health care settings

Using input from groups of practitioners, consumers, and organizations, the Joint Commission then decides which issues have the highest priority and set goals on how to solve them

  • The goals are tailored to specific accreditation programs

This course will focus on Hospital National Patient Safety Goals

Course Content Example 2:

Improve the Safety of Using Medications

Label all medications, medication containers, and other solutions on and off the sterile field in preoperative and other procedural settings. NSPG.03.04.01

Decrease medication errors by making all medications and solutions easy to identify.

  • Label medication or solution if not prepared, taken directly to patient, and administered
  • Label and medication that is removed from its original packaging
  • Include medication name, strengthen, amount, diluent name and volume, and expiration date/time
  • Verify labels visually and verbally
  • Throw away any unlabeled medications or solutions
  • Unless it is a multi-use vial, throw away all labeled containers on the sterile field at the end of a procedure

Course Content Example 3:

Reduce the Risk of Health Care-Associated Infections

Comply with either the current Centers for Disease Control and Protection hand hygiene guidelines or the current World Health Organization hand hygiene guidelines - NSPG.07.01.01

Hand hygiene of health care staff is related to health care-associated infections

  • Follow a program that is based on these guidelines
  • Set goals, improve compliance, and provide feedback


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