Factors that prevent physicians reporting adverse events

Anastasius Moumtzoglou (P. and A. Kyriakou Children's Hospital, Athens, Greece)

International Journal of Health Care Quality Assurance

ISSN: 0952-6862

Publication date: 12 January 2010

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the reasons why Greek doctors are reluctant to report adverse events.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper is an exploratory study using the adverse events questionnaire, administered to 209 doctors in 14 major Athens hospitals, comprising university as well as tertiary.

Findings

The questionnaire showed a high degree of internal consistency (Cronbach's alpha 0.84), which revealed a four‐factor solution, explaining 67.4 per cent of the variance. Three dominant reasons for not reporting, with which almost or more than 50 per cent of doctors strongly or slightly agreed, were identified as no tradition for bringing up adverse events and a belief that bringing up adverse events will not lead to any improvement and workload.

Research limitations/implications

Factors that dissuade doctors from bringing up adverse events may be projected not only by cultural aspects such as professional, national and organisational cultures but also by healthcare structural issues such as safety systems, rules and procedures, and relevant acts and regulations. The study has several noteworthy limitations. First, doctors' response was poor, which might conceal sample bias problems. Second, the present study identified four factors but the fourth factor was not well defined.

Originality/value

The study provides an understanding why physicians fail to report adverse events so that systems can be introduced and cultures developed, which make this easier.

Keywords

Citation

Moumtzoglou, A. (2010), "Factors that prevent physicians reporting adverse events", International Journal of Health Care Quality Assurance, Vol. 23 No. 1, pp. 51-58. https://doi.org/10.1108/09526861011010677

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Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2010, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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