Improving Patient Safety - OT21

Improving Patient Safety

Practice Errors and Sentinel Events in Occupational and Physical Therapy

by Kaitlin MacDonald, MOT, OTR/L and Susan Ann Swinehart, OTD, MS, BA/OT
(4.4 / 465 ratings )

This course is credentialed for:
Occupational Therapy (0.10 AOTA CEU)

Price: $19.00
CE-PRO Price: $9.50


Safe, reliable care is the expectation of patients, family, and staff. While it is impossible to eliminate medical errors, that is the goal. In 1996, The Joint Commission established a sentinel event policy; this was done to help healthcare facilities and providers learn from adverse events, which would in turn lead to improved patient safety. Subsequent to the sentinel event policy, national patient safety systems and goals have been established. The Health and Medicine Division of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine defines medical error as “the failure of a planned action to be completed as intended or the use of a wrong plan to achieve an aim.” This course seeks to identify patient safety categories, systems, and goals.


The goal of this patient safety continuing education program is to define, according to The Joint Commission, sentinel safety events, national patient safety goals, and patient safety systems. These will be described, as they affect practice and service delivery models. After studying the information presented here, you will be able to:
  • Define sentinel safety events
  • Identify patient safety goals and examples of a therapist’s response
  • Describe harm to patients and healthcare providers
  • Describe establishing a clinical atmosphere that promotes patient safety
Content Level: Introductory
Instructional Method: Online Course — Narrative
Content Focus
Occupational Therapy Process 1: Outcomes
Professional Issues 2: Supervision
Professional Issues 3: Contemporary Issues and Trends
Accreditation Information
OnCourse Learning is an approved provider of continuing education for occupational therapists by the American Occupational Therapy Association.
OnCourse Learning is also accredited by the Florida Board of Occupational Therapy (provider # FBN 50-1489).

Course Originally Released on: 6/18/2010
Date of Most Recent Review: 1/23/2017
Course Termination/Update Date: 1/23/2020

Unless stated above, the planners and authors of this course have declared no relevant conflicts of interest that relate to this educational activity. OnCourse Learning guarantees this educational activity is free from bias.

Please see CE Course Instructions to learn how to earn CE credit for this module.


For Florida professionals:

This course completion will be electronically reported to CE Broker as required per Florida Statute 456.025(7). Click here to view your CE Broker transcript and check the status of your CE requirements with a FREE 7-day CE Broker trial subscription. It may take up to 24 hours for the course to appear on your CE Broker transcript.

It is now required that all CE is completed and reported to CE Broker before you renew your license. When you complete continuing education with us, OnCourse Learning will report your hours for you.

Read more about the new license renewal process at and claim your free Basic Account in CE Broker to see what has already been reported for you.

Please check the licenses/certifications section under my account (after logging in) to make sure you have entered a valid FL license number. This information is required for correct reporting of your course completions to CE Broker.

Reports to CE Broker

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Vera M - Tampa, FL  ·  Jan 25, 2019
I would recommend this course
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Jeanette C - Dallas, TX  ·  Nov 09, 2018
excellent information for error prevention and patient safety.
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Virginia P - Tallahassee, FL  ·  Sep 03, 2018
Very good. Thank you.
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Jennifer C - Jonesboro, AR  ·  Apr 22, 2018
This course provided good education on patient safety and satisfaction.
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Jeannette S - Boothwyn, PA  ·  Mar 15, 2018
I really enjoyed this course-- easy to understand, and appreciated the charts used to aid in the talking points.
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Price: $19.00
CE-PRO Price: $9.50