The risk management standards proclaimed by the Joint Commission
The risk management standards proclaimed by the Joint Commission (which was known as the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organization, or JCAHO, until 2007) stress the connection between risk management and performance improvement activities. It established formal requirements that allow managing actions targeted on loss prevention. For example, the policies developed by the Joint Commission explain how to perform root cause analysis (RCA) and failure mode and effects analysis (FMEA) processes. RCA represents a systematic approach to identifying the causes behind of accidents in order that measures can be taken to prevent future adverse effects. FMEA helps healthcare organizations analyze processes associated with high-risk procedures and clinical services with their underlying weaknesses allowing to solve the problem before it occurs. Surveys prepared by The Joint Commission help the risk management professionals to indicate the sources of potential problems that may have been overlooked by the healthcare organization before. Administrative personnel of different levels contributes to maintain the standards established by the Joint Commission. The patient safety officer (PSO) supervises personnel responsible for the delivery of patient safety service and risk management. He establishes the methods allowing improving patient safety, risk management, and quality of services. The job of PSO is to analyze clinical processes in the given healthcare organization, identify potential risks for both patients and employees and after that create strategies to increase safety, effectiveness, and efficiency. The PSO has to find out the best strategies targeted to decrease the medical errors and control their implementation. He has to assist departments in securing compliance with the risk management policies developed by the Joint Commission.The department’s risk manager’s task is to oversee the hospital’s risk management activities, like keeping up with facility insurance programs, responding on claims against the facility, interacting with defense legal counsel, daily supervising the risk management program, preparing and analyzing risk management data, and involving colleagues into risk management educational programs. Risk manager has to ensure the compliance with the Joint Commission standards and policies concerning enhancement of patients’ safety, quality of care, and in case of the accident he has to minimize loss of the healthcare facility’s assets. In case there is a policy or regulation that has to be formulated for the facility, the risk manager is a right person to do that. He also ensures assistance to departments in complying with Joint Commission regarding risk management standards and policies.Chief risk officer is responsible for the protection of the healthcare institution and its employees from the loss caused by accidents. He advises and consults e-suit and the Board on where the potential problems might come from and offers solutions for the problem allowing to minimize the loss. He manages, consults and promotes risk-financing strategy with the chief financial officer about potential problems that can cause damage to the organization. Chief risk officer approves settlements of claims against healthcare facility in accordance with its guidelines securing CEO, CFO and c-suite approval. He directs legal counsel and other employees involved in claims management and approves the action strategies. The chief risk officer develops and introduces an “early intervention program.” He also coordinates all the patient safety activities.