Previous studies have demonstrated that the general public can report various patient safety incidents (PSIs) that are not identified by other methods. In this study, we investigated the characteristics of PSIs that the general public experience in Korea.
In face-to-face surveys, participants were asked to report the frequency and type of PSIs, level of patient harm, and whether the PSIs were perceived as a medical error. We conducted logistic regression analysis to identify the sociodemographic factors of participants associated with their PSI experiences. Additionally, we analyzed relationships between the perception of PSIs as a medical error and both the type of PSIs and level of patient harm.
Among the 700 participants surveyed, 24 (3.4%) and 37 (5.3%) individuals reported that they or their family members experienced PSIs, respectively. Participants with at least a college degree were more likely to report PSI experiences than those with a lower educational level (odds ratio, 3.54; 95% confidence interval, 1.86-6.74). Whereas approximately half of participants (48.2%) involved in PSI experiences that caused no harm thought that there were medical errors in their PSIs, all participants (100%) who experienced PSIs with severe harm responded that medical errors occurred in their PSIs.
The general public can report their experiences with PSIs. Periodic surveys that target the general public will provide additional data that reflect the level of patient safety from the viewpoint of the general public.
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From the *Department of Preventive Medicine, Ulsan University Hospital, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Ulsan; and
†Department of Preventive Medicine, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Seoul, Republic of Korea.
Correspondence: Sang-Il Lee, MD, PhD, MPH, Department of Preventive Medicine, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, 88, Olympic-ro 43-gil, Songpa-gu, Seoul, 05505, Republic of Korea (e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org).
The authors disclose no conflict of interest. This study did not receive any financial support.