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Patient Safety

What can you do? Be involved in your health care! The single most important way you can help prevent errors is to be an active member of your health care team!

  • A thorough patient history is important in developing your plan of care. Please report any past medical, surgical, and family history to your physician.
  • Make sure that your doctor or nurse knows all of the medicine you are taking. This includes prescriptions and over-the-counter medicine, and dietary supplements such as vitamins and herbs.
  • Make sure your doctor knows about any allergies and adverse reactions you have had to medicines or food.
  • Ask for information about your medicine or health care in terms that you can understand.
  • Learn about your condition and treatments by asking your doctor.
  • If you are having surgery, make sure that you, your doctor, and your surgeon all agree and are clear on exactly what will be performed.
  • Know the details of the procedure, including the area of operation, as well as what is being done.
  • Being in the hospital makes you more at risk of falling. This may be related to your medical condition or unfamiliar surroundings. Please call for assistance when getting out of the chair or bed.
  • When you are being discharged from the hospital, ask your doctor to explain the discharge instructions for follow-up and care.


What is Sepsis?

  • Sepsis is a whole-body infection that can start as a simple cough, cut in your skin, drop in urine, or extreme stomach pain.
  • 1.7 million people will get sepsis- of which 350,000 die.
  •  Your body fights infection by sending fighter cells.
  • Too many fighter cells block oxygenated blood pathways to get to your organs.
  • This drops your blood pressure.
  • Your organs will start to fail without the needed oxygenated blood.
  •  This is a medical EMERGENCY and may lead to death within hours.
  • Getting medical treatment as EARLY as possible is VERY important.

Who is at higher risk of getting Sepsis?

  • Babies under 1 year old
  • Any person that is 65 years and older
  • Those with a long-term illness or disease like diabetes, kidney disease, heart disease, or high blood pressure
  • Persons with weakened immune systems
  • Those who were just discharged from the hospital
  • However, anyone can get SEPSIS!

Signs of Sepsis

  • Fever
  • Shivering or feeling very cold
  • Hard to breathe
  • Feeling breathless
  • Fast breathing
  • Fast heartbeat
  • Extreme pain
  • Sweaty skin
  • Skin loses color/pale
  • Drop in urine
  • Swollen Body
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Confusion or slurred speech
  • Weakness
  • Feeling very sleepy
  • Faint
  • Low blood pressure

How can you prevent Sepsis?

  • Practice good hygiene – Wash hands
  • Keep cuts clean until healed
  • Vaccinations
  • Regular doctor visits
  • Know the signs and symptoms
  • Act fast
  • Ask about sepsis

To learn more, visit:


St. Bernard Hospital takes patient safety seriously and we gladly participate in the Leapfrog Group’s Hospital Safety Grades. The nonprofit Leapfrog Group measures how well hospitals keep patients safe from accidents, injuries, infections and errors. Recently, St. Bernard Hospital received a C grade on the Spring 2022 report. St. Bernard Hospital is on a journey to receive the best grade possible. For more information about the Hospital Safety Grades, click here.


One of the ways that St. Bernard Hospital maintains a healthy, safe environment is by leveraging BioVigil Hand Hygiene Solutions. The colored lights on the BioVigil badge visually communicate hand hygiene compliance to patients and families, providing reassurance that their healthcare worker has clean hands, giving them one less thing to worry about. Every patient interaction should begin with a hand hygiene event and the opportunity to visibly demonstrate a commitment to patient safety and quality of care. Good hand hygiene helps St. Bernard Hospital meet industry certifications for patient safety.

Biovigil - Hand Hygiene Solutions

Infection Prevention

St. Bernard Hospital has a team of professionals dedicated to infection prevention throughout the hospital. This team ensures compliance with safety standard measures to assure the hospital is successful at preventing infections.

Just Culture

“Just Culture” refers to a system of shared accountability in which organizations are accountable for the systems they have designed and for responding to the behaviors of their employees in a fair and just manner. Employees are accountable for the quality of their choices and for reporting errors and system vulnerabilities. At St. Bernard Hospital, leadership is committed to fostering a Just Culture where patient safety is improved and our staff feel more secure in the decisions they make.

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“St. Bernard Hospital has invested in expanding the capacity of our leadership team and in the necessary resources to improve patient safety.  We continue to pursue actions that help us develop a strong culture of patient safety.”

Charles Holland, President and CEO, St. Bernard Hospital

St. Bernard Hospital names Michael Richardson, MHSc, RN, BSN, CPPS, CPHRM, as new patient safety and quality leader

“Our team is steadfast and focused on preventing harm at St. Bernard Hospital. Each and every day, we have staff who show up with a commitment and dedication to providing safe and high-quality care. Preventing patient harm is an extension of that commitment.”

Michael Richardson, Chief Clinical, Quality & Patient Safety Officer, St. Bernard Hospital

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