Most Canadians who access health services receive safe care. However, sometimes there are adverse effects to receiving care — unintended harm associated with the delivery of care that can result in prolonged hospital stay, disability or death.
CIHI is working to help understand the issues related to patient safety and the provision of safe care, and is undertaking a large body of work in this area. We are also helping to measure improvements in the safety of care provided. Our work includes a number of initiatives, from the development and reporting of indicators across the continuum of care to other quality and patient safety analyses and initiatives.
One initiative, in partnership with the Canadian Patient Safety Institute, is a project on patient safety in Canada’s acute care hospitals.
The result is a report that introduces a new measure of potentially preventable harm in hospitals. The measure is linked to an improvement resource containing evidence-informed practices that can reduce the occurrence of harm.
The report, Measuring Patient Harm in Canadian Hospitals, provides an overview of the status of these patient safety events in Canada (outside of Quebeci), and identifies how the data and associated improvement resource can be used for improvement.
The Hospital Harm Improvement Resource is a compilation of resources to complement the Hospital Harm measure. It links measurement and improvement by providing evidence-informed resources that will support patient safety and improvement efforts.
We welcome your feedback and questions
- For questions about patient safety, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Have a data inquiry or research question? Make a custom data request.
Patient safety information
Reports and analyses
Databases and data sources
- Access more than 60 patient safety resources and online tools — from data on infection control practices and restraint use to analytical reports on a broad range of patient safety topics — in this new Patient Safety Resource.
- View our 1-page infographic capturing CIHI's major products on patient safety.
- New indicators:
- In-Hospital Sepsis Event
- Medication-Resistant Infections
- Hospitalized Surgical Site Infections
- In-Hospital Falls
- Pressure Ulcers
- Measuring Patient Harm in Canadian Hospitals (Oct. 2016)
- Preventing Falls: Improving the Health and Quality of Life of Canadians (Oct. 2014)
- The Use of Selected Psychotropic Drugs Among Seniors on Public Drug Programs in Canada, 2001 to 2010 (Mar. 2012)
- Restraint Use and Other Control Interventions for Mental Health Inpatients in Ontario (Aug. 2011)
- Seniors and Falls (Dec. 2010) (PDF)
The National System for Incident Reporting (NSIR) is a free, web-based reporting system used by Canadian health care facilities to securely and anonymously share, analyze and discuss medication and IV fluid incidents.
NSIR data and analyses inform quality improvement activities at all levels — from ward or unit projects to pan-Canadian initiatives — to foster improvements in health care delivery.
The Canadian Medication Incident Reporting and Prevention System (CMIRPS) is a collaborative pan-Canadian program of Health Canada, the Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI), the Institute for Safe Medication Practices Canada (ISMP Canada) and the Canadian Patient Safety Institute (CPSI).
CIHI has a number of other health services databases that contain quality-of-care information. These are described in detail in Types of Care.
Metadata is information about data. It helps users understand and interpret data from a specific source.
- NSIR Long-Term Care Pilot Test: Executive Summary (2012) (PDF)
- NSIR Overview (Spring 2011) (PDF)
- Learning From Medication Incident Data (April 2012) (PDF)