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Quality Standards and Patient Safety

Patient Safety at Children's Hospital

East Tennessee Children's Hospital is committed to providing a safe environment for your child.

The information below illustrates how Children's Hospital is providing the safest possible care to your child during his or her stay.


2017 Achievements

Children's Hospital was awarded hospital of the month by Solutions for Patient Safety (SPS) in 2015 and again in 2017.

SPS recognized Children's Hospital as one of the first five hospitals to achieve greater than the 90th percentile in our adherence to bundle processes on five out of five hospital-acquired conditions (HACS) since October 2014. The bundles that achieved this reliability goal include catheter-associated urinary tract infections (CAUTI), central line-associated urinary tract infections (CAUTI), central line-associated blood stream infections (CLABSI), surgical site infections (SSI) and hospital-acquired pressure ulcers (HAPU).

SPS also named Children's Hospital in the top 10 percent of participating hospitals in outcomes on CAUTI, CLABSI, ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP) and falls for October 2014 through 2015.

Safety Coaches

A pediatric medical center is often a fast-paced environment where an error can immediately impact the safety of a patient. Children's Hospital implemented a safety coach program to keep consistency and reliability in policies, procedures and processes. This program provides more education and accountability so preventable harm can be avoided and patients will remain safe while they are in our care.

A safety coach is a leader in building and sustaining accountability for expected safety behaviors throughout Children's Hospital. There are 180 trained front line staff safety coaches who look for opportunities to improve safety through positive or constructive feedback. The interdisciplinary group also includes an additional 70 active leaders in a variety of disciplines and 13 physicians and nurse practitioners. Taking advantage of these teaching opportunities in real-life situations allows staff to feel educated, confident and supported while following processes.


Quality Care: How We Measure Up


What is a Central Line Associated Blood Stream Infection and How Does it Happen?

Central Line Associated Blood Stream Infections

A central venous catheter is a special type of IV inserted into a vein. This catheter can be used in your child for a lot longer than a tradinonal IV.

Because these catheters are used for longer periods of time, we have to work hard to make sure they do not become infected. Infections from these catheters are called central line-associated blood stream infections, or CLABSIs, and can be very serious.

Central Line Associated Blood Stream Infections


What Are Ventilator-Associated Pneumonias and How Do They Happen?

Ventilator Associated PneumoniasA ventilator is a piece of equipment that is used to help patients breathe when they are not able to breathe for themselves. When a child is on a ventilator, a tube is inserted in their mouth to their trachea to allow them to breathe. Since this tube goes into the lungs, care must be taken to make sure it is kept clean and changed as needed in order to prevent infection.

Ventilator Associated Event


What Is An Adverse Drug Event That Causes Harm and How Do They Happen?

Adverse Drug Event

A medication error can occur several ways. Your child can be given a drug at the wrong time, they can be given the wrong amount, or they can be given the wrong drug. If these things occur and your child experiences harm, this is considered an adverse drug event.

Adverse Drug Events Causing Harm


We Give More Than 100,000 Medications Per Month


What is a Surgical Site Infection and How Are They Treated?

Surgical Site Infections

Surgical site infections are infections that are directly associated with a child’s surgery and have been associated with a number of procedures. Two of the most common types of surgeries that have an increased rate of infection are surgeries to correct scoliosis (curve of the spine) and ventriculoperitoneal shunt placements (tubes inserted into the brain to drain extra fluid.)


These types of infections are treated with antibiotics.

Surgical Site Infections

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