Brief on Japanese Medical Accidents Investigation System and the American Patient Safety and Quality Improvement Act
Patient safety incidents can have devastating emotional and physical consequences for patients and their families; moreover can cast tediously long litigation process for the professionals involved. How to build a safer health care providing system and design processes of reducing error to ensure safety from accidental injury has been a great concern in these 2 decades.
This article briefly introduces the safety reporting systems in Japan and U.S.A. , focusing on the Japanese Medical Accidents Investigation System promulgated in 2016 Medical care Act Amendment, and the American Patient Safety and Quality Improvement Act in 2005. This article elaborates the different legislation backgrounds, enactment courses, and core provisions between these two countries, with special reference to whether or not the safety report and root cause analysis work product is privileged from disclosure in civil or criminal court proceedings.
Though it is too early to draw conclusion about which patient safety reporting legislation is superior to the other because more subsequent follow-up observation is required, yet hopefully this comparative law brief will cast some light on the different policy and design toward the patient safety enhancement in medical care.