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Use checklist to help staff clear areas to protect at-risk patients

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November 17, 2019

By A.J. Plunkett (aplunkett@decisionhealth.com)

While The Joint Commission (TJC) clarified that it does not expect all patient care rooms in general acute or emergency department settings to be ligature free, your staff still needs to remove possible items for self-harm from a room if the patient occupying it is considered to be at risk.

Ligature risk tops the list of problems cited by TJC surveyors under one of the most frequently cited standards, EC.02.06.01, on establishing a safe and functional environment for patients. TJC cited ligature risk in at least 12 immediate threat to life decisions during 2018, according to Jennifer Cowel, RN, MHSA, president and CEO of Patton Healthcare Consulting in Naperville, Illinois, and a former TJC executive.

While The Joint Commission (TJC) clarified that it does not expect all patient care rooms in general acute or emergency department settings to be ligature free, your staff still needs to remove possible items for self-harm from a room if the patient occupying it is considered to be at risk.



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