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Workers can address health care infections.

The National Patient Safety Foundation is calling on health care leaders and policymakers to coordinate a public health response to what it describes as a "public health crisis" of preventable health care harm.

In a call to action, the foundation said a response that draws on the experience and expertise of public health professionals and organizations will speed up progress against preventable harm and help build the infrastructure needed to maintain such efforts across the health care system.

Building on successful efforts to reduce health care-associated infections, the call to action proposes a public health framework that includes defining the problem and setting goals, coordinating activities across sectors, educating and empowering the community, measuring progress, identifying interventions that work and training the workforce.

"Health care benefits from a dedicated workforce, but the systems and conditions that support safe care practice often fall short," the call to action stated. "When preventable harm occurs, a host of organizational factors often contributed to the outcome, many outside the control of any one person. A preoccupation with blame has distracted attention away from addressing the broader system issues at hand."

A number of organizations have endorsed the call to action, including the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses, the American Board of Internal Medicine, the Federation of State Medical Boards and the Institute for Healthcare Improvement.

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Caption: Nursing students have reported that they would like more training to better prevent infections, a new study shows.

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Title Annotation:ON THE JOB IN BRIEF
Author:Krisberg, Kim
Publication:The Nation's Health
Date:Jul 1, 2017
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