Identification and description of randomized controlled trials and systematic reviews on patient safety published in medical journals

Leticia Andrea Barajas-Nava, José Andrés Calvache, Jesús López-Alcalde, Ivan Solà, Xavier Bonfill Cosp

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Objective: To identify and describe randomized controlled trials (RCTs) and systematic reviews (SRs) on patient safety published from 1973 onward. Materials and Methods: We handsearched a total of 12 medical journals published in English with contents related to patient safety to identify RCTs and SRs published between 1973 and the end of 2010. The results obtained from this search were complemented with an additional search in MEDLINE. The documents were classified by area of specialty or service in which the intervention was applied, level of preventive action, and type of patient safety incident, the latter in accordance with the International Classification for Patient Safety proposed by the World Health Organization (WHO). The main features of the identified studies are also described. Results: A total of 787 issues of 12 journals published between 1973 and 2010 were handsearched. This procedure yielded 10,162 references, of which, 131 corresponded to RCTs and 127 to SRs. A parallel MEDLINE search identified only about two-thirds of these articles. Of all the studies identified, 83 RCTs and 64 SRs addressed interventions related to patient safety. The types of incident related to patient safety that were included most often in RCTs involved the clinical process, and for SRs, those related to resources/organizational management. On average, only 3.5 RCTs and 3.4 SRs were published per year, many of which had significant deficiencies in the reported information, such as, for instance, a lack of details on the methodology used. Conclusions: The number of RCTs and SRs on patient safety published in specialized journals is scarce. No studies on interventions to improve the safety of the handling of blood and derivatives, infections related to health care, nutrition, or infrastructure were identified as a result of our search. Handsearching plays a key role in the identification of all the clinical trials that could be included in SRs on patient safety interventions. Knowing the content of RCTs and SRs published on patient safety can better target future research. Copyright © 2013 by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)79-86
JournalJournal of Patient Safety
Volume9
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2013

Keywords

  • Meta-analysis
  • Patient safety
  • Randomized controlled trials
  • Systematic reviews

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Identification and description of randomized controlled trials and systematic reviews on patient safety published in medical journals'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this