HQS-640 Quality Improvement and Patient Safety Practicum Journal 2
Weeks Covering:
Practicum Site:
Hours Worked (past 2 weeks): ___20
Total Hours: 50____/150 total of all hours worked up to this point

Write a journal entry of 750-1,500 words on practicum experience and topic specific questions. For this topic, include the following:
• Practicum Activities Reflection: Provide observations and thoughts on the activities in your practicum setting during Weeks 3-4.

• Health Care Quality and Patient Safety: Differentiate between safety and quality in relation to health care. What is their relationship? How are they connected? How are they different?

• Practicum Project Preparation: How is the need for patient safety or quality improvement change identified? Summarize the process and results of your specific needs assessment, including any tools used. What type of data was analyzed? How will this change improve health care quality and/or patient safety?

Evidence: What role does data play in quality improvement projects?

Practicum Activities Reflection:

During weeks 3-4 of my practicum, I had the opportunity to shadow various health care professionals and observe their daily activities. One of the most notable experiences was shadowing a nurse in the emergency department. The nurse was responsible for triaging patients, taking vital signs, and administering medications. It was fascinating to see how the nurse used a checklist to ensure that all necessary steps were taken, and how they collaborated with other members of the healthcare team to provide the best possible care for the patient.

I also observed a quality improvement meeting, where members of the healthcare team discussed strategies to improve patient outcomes. It was interesting to see how the team used data to identify areas for improvement, and how they collaborated to develop and implement new protocols. The meeting reinforced the importance of teamwork and communication in healthcare, as well as the value of continuous quality improvement.

Health Care Quality and Patient Safety:

Safety and quality are both essential components of healthcare, but they are distinct concepts. Safety refers to the prevention of harm to patients, while quality refers to the degree to which healthcare services meet established standards of care. Safety is a necessary but not sufficient condition for quality. In other words, if healthcare services are not safe, they cannot be considered high-quality.

Safety and quality are closely related, as ensuring patient safety is a critical aspect of providing high-quality care. When healthcare services are safe, patients are less likely to experience adverse events, such as medication errors, infections, and falls. This, in turn, improves patient outcomes and enhances the overall quality of care.

Practicum Project Preparation:

The need for patient safety or quality improvement changes is identified through a needs assessment, which involves collecting and analyzing data to identify gaps in care. In my practicum, I conducted a needs assessment to identify areas for improvement in the hospital’s medication administration process. I used a combination of qualitative and quantitative methods, including observation, interviews, and a review of the hospital’s policies and procedures.

I also used a tool called the Medication Administration Process Assessment Tool (MAPAT), which is a standardized tool that assesses the medication administration process in healthcare organizations. The MAPAT helped me identify areas for improvement, such as the need for additional staff training on medication administration and the need to streamline the medication reconciliation process.

The data I analyzed included the number of medication errors reported in the hospital’s incident reporting system, as well as feedback from healthcare providers and patients. By analyzing this data, I was able to identify opportunities for improvement and develop a plan to address them.

The change I proposed was to develop a standardized medication administration protocol that includes training for staff on medication administration and reconciliation, as well as the use of technology to reduce the risk of medication errors. This change will improve healthcare quality by reducing the number of medication errors and enhancing patient safety.


Data plays a critical role in quality improvement projects. Without data, it is impossible to identify areas for improvement or measure the effectiveness of interventions. Data can be collected through a variety of methods, including surveys, interviews, observation, and incident reporting systems. Once collected, data can be analyzed using statistical methods to identify trends and patterns.

Data can also be used to monitor progress and evaluate the effectiveness of quality improvement initiatives. For example, if a hospital implements a new protocol to reduce the risk of hospital-acquired infections, data can be collected to determine whether the protocol has been effective in reducing infection rates.

In conclusion, my practicum experience has provided me with valuable insights into the importance of patient safety and quality improvement in healthcare. Through my needs assessment and the development of a medication administration protocol, I have learned how data can be used to identify areas for improvement and develop effective interventions. I look forward to continuing to learn and grow in this field and making a positive impact on patient