The Joint Commission today announced the 2010 National Patient Safety Goals and related requirements for accredited behavioral health care organizations. The purpose of the 2010 National Patient Safety Goals is to improve patient safety. The Goals focus on problems in health care safety and how to solve them.

The 2010 Behavioral Health Care National Patient Safety Goals are:

Identify clients correctly
Use at least two ways to identify clients. For example, use the client’s name and date of birth. This is done to make sure that each client gets the medicine and treatment meant for them.

Prevent infection
Use the hand cleaning guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or the World Health Organization.

Check client medicines
Find out what medicines each client is taking. Make sure that it is OK for the client to take any new medicines with their current medicines.
Give a list of the client’s medicines to their next caregiver. Give the list to the client’s regular doctor before the client goes home.
Give a list of the client’s medicines to the client and their family before they go home. Explain the list. Some clients may get medicine in small amounts or for a short time. Make sure that it is OK for those clients to take those medicines with their current medicines.

Identify client safety risks
Find out which clients are most likely to try to kill themselves.