From the School of Nursing Quality and Safety Officer

Nursing Students' Use of Safety Reporting Tools and Their Perception of Safety Issues in Clinical Settings

The role of a newly created quality and safety officer (QSO) position designed to increase education in quality and safety measures among prelicensure nursing students is described in this article.

In response to the Quality and Safety Education for Nurses (QSEN) challenge for increased quality of patient safety and care, the University of San Francisco School of Nursing and Health Professionals created the QSO position.

The QSEN, funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, is a national initiative for improving the quality and safety education in schools of nursing to ultimately prepare nurses to provide safe care. The QSO helped develop formal error reporting and near-miss reporting protocols. Through the reporting system, the QSO was able to identify gaps regarding safety in the school of nursing. An exploratory survey, completed by 145 students, helped identify students’ use of (or lack of use) of safety reporting tools, and their perceptions of safety issues.

Key Finding:

  • The survey results revealed that barriers to reporting near-miss events and errors among students mirror the reasons that nurses and physicians identify. 

The new QSO role helps create a focal point for faculty and nursing students to work together to improve upon the competencies laid forth in the QSEN.