Reprinted with permission from the March 2015 issue of Trustee magazine, vol. 68, no. 3. ©2015 by Health Forum Inc. All rights reserved. Permission granted for digital use only.
By Donna Willeumier and Saud Juman
Hospitals and other health care facilities create and maintain thousands of policy documents. A typical hospital has policies that guide daily operations, ranging from administration and human resources to direct care and use of medication.
An infection control policy, for example, guides laboratory procedures, specimen testing, personal protective equipment and waste disposal, while a discharge policy designates when and by whom patients can be released and what documentation is necessary. Effective development, use and maintenance of an organization’s policies and procedures help to establish a culture of compliance, mitigate risk, support consistent clinical practice and achieve the organization’s objectives.