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Patient Safety

At Rice, we take your safety very seriously. Before your hospital visit, please take a moment to review our online patient safety video. (Note there are two parts to the video. Please review both parts.)

View our Patient Safety video

patient safety video
Your Role in Staying Safe
in the Hospital - Part 1
patient safety video
Your Role in Staying Safe
in the Hospital - Part 2
patient safety video
Su Rol para Mantenerse Seguro
en el Hospital - Parte 1
patient safety video
Su Rol para Mantenerse Seguro
en el Hospital - Parte 2

Stay safe while in the hospital (Download Safety Tips)

  • Making your visit safe
  • Medication safety
  • Speak up for your safety
  • At the hospital

Making your hospital visit safe

We are dedicated to sharing information on quality and safety with you and your family through efforts such as voluntarily participation in the Leapfrog Group Survey.

Leapfrog is a coalition of more than 100 public and private organizations that share our commitment to provide the safest healthcare possible.

We commend the Leapfrog Group for recognizing quality of care is not just based on cost. However, we realize their standards are not applicable to all hospitals.

To make your healthcare visit safe, we have many steps in place that go beyond Leapfrog's three standards. The following are a few of the countless steps our hospital is taking to assure you receive reliable care:

  • Your safety is central to every aspect within our hospital. It is the top priority at all levels of our organization including management, physicians, and staff.
  • We have a patient safety committee in place to evaluate any safety concerns brought up by staff, patients, or family members. The committee reviews each safety aspect and develops steps to make our hospital a safe place to receive your care.
  • All physicians and nurses at our hospital are board licensed and participate in continuing education.
  • For medication safety, we double-check to make sure you receive the right medication, right dose, with the right method at the right time. We encourage you to speak up if you have any questions about your medication.
  • We recommend you to have a family member or friend with you during your health care visits. They can provide comfort, support, and can also help ask questions.
  • We encourage you to ask questions and take notes.

Prepare for surgery

  • Ask questions. Prior to surgery, talk to the physician and nurse about any concerns.
  • Talk about the procedure. make sure that you, the doctor and surgeon all agree and are clear on exactly what is going to be done.
  • Mark the area. Make sure the body area to be operated on is clearly marked.

Medication Safety

Ask the doctor and pharmacist about the medicine. What is the name, benefits, and possible side effects or reactions with other medications or food/beverages?

  • What is it? Make sure you know the name and color of the medicine. Take medicine in well-lit areas.
  • What is it for? Make sure you know why the medicine is being taken.
  • Who do I take it? Ask the doctor or pharmacist to explain how to take the medicine and how often it should be taken.
  • What should I look for? Ask what the results should be and possible reactions.

Double check your prescription. Before you leave the pharmacy, check your medicine to make sure it was prepared for you. Speak up before you leave because pharmacies typically do not take back medicine once it has been purchased.

Discuss previous allergies or reactions. Make sure the doctors, nurses and pharmacists, know about any allergies or reactions to drugs you or your family member might have.

Brown-bag it. Bring the medicines or a list to every appointment. Include over-the-counter, herbal, or dietary drugs. Throw away old medicines.

Key Safety Highlights

Rice hospital participates in statewide safety and quality activities:

We participate in the Minnesota Hospital Association's Patient Safety Registry. This allows us to share safety resources and knowledge with hospitals across the state.

  • Rice staff sit on the Minnesota Hospital Association's Patient Safety Committee.
  • Rice Hospital and physician staff are participating in an Upper Midwest regional safety collaborative focused on improving health care team performance in order to improve patient safety.
  • Our hospital is committed to provide information to our patients and their families by completing the Leapfrog Group survey at
  • We have participated in StratisHealth's process improvement project for atrial fibrillation and heart failure patients.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid ranked Minnesota 4th in the nation for providing quality care to Medicare patients.

Rice has been recognized for our safety activities by being awarded the 2001 Minnesota Hospital Association Patient Safety Award.

Speak Up For Your Safety!

We are working hard to ensure that your care here at Rice Hospital is delivered in a safe manner.

Your safety is improved when you are involved and knowledgeable about your care.

Please Speak Up!

When you or your family member is a patient at Rice Memorial Hospital, you want to be sure you received the best and safest care possible.

Our hospital and healthcare professionals are committed to providing you the best care. We ask you and your family to join us to make sure that our care meets your needs and we encourage you to let us know about your experience.


One of Rice Hospital's goals is to encourage and support open and honest communication with you, your family, and your healthcare team.

  • We participate in the Minnesota Hospital Associations Patient Safety Registry. This provides us with the latest safety information from around the state.
  • We encourage you, your family, and staff to speak up if there is a safety concern.
  • It is our policy to be open and honest with you and your family by informing you of the potential results of your care including unexpected results.
  • We encourage you to designate a family spokesperson to help communicate with your family and health care team.
  • We encourage you to complete a satisfaction survey. We survey our patients to learn about their hospital stay experience. We review these surveys and make changes as a result of your comments.
  • We welcome the opportunity to discuss the care you receive. If you have comments, questions, or concerns please

    >>contact us.

Helpful Resources and Links

The Minnesota Alliance for Patient Safety

20 Tips to Help Prevent Medical Errors

20 Tips to Help Prevent Medical Errors in Children

Ways You Can Help Your Family Prevent Medical Errors

Five Steps to Safer Health Care

Institute for Safe Medicine Practice "Alerts for Consumers'

National Council on Patient Information and Education

National Patient Safety Foundation

At the hospital or clinic

Have someone with you. Bring a family member or friend who knows your medical history and who can also ask questions. This can help to ensure the best care possible. Family members often provide the comfort and support needed to promote your return to good health.

Bring medicines. Bring all medicines you are taking or a list of medications to every appointment.

Be active and speak up.

  • Share medical information. Write down and carry important medical information with you. Keep a list of medical history, office visits and medication use. Medical information should include allergies and the names, address and phone numbers of important health care providers.
  • Make sure you understand the plan of treatment. Ask the nurse or doctor to explain any test results an the plan of treatment. If anything is not clear, speak up and ask questions.
  • Make sure you know what medicines should be taken. Make sure you know what has been ordered for your care. Ask questions if the medicines look different from before.
  • Wash hands. Patients, family members and caregivers should wash hands frequently to prevent the spread of infection.
  • Know who is in charge of care. Make sure that someone, such as your personal doctor is in charge of the care for you or your family member. This is especially important in a hospital or in case of complex illness. As if your primary physician will be at the hospital.

Take notes. Write down any questions about the patients' condition, treatment, clinic visit or hospital stay. Take notes about what you learn from your caregiver. At the end of your visit to the clinic or hospital, ask for information in writing, including information about medicines, follow-up care, and your treatment plan.

Learn as much as you can. It is up to you to learn as much as you can about care and treatment. The most important way you can help to prevent medical errors is to be an active and informed member of the health care team. This means taking part in every health care decision.

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