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The page below is a sample from the LabCE course Patient Safety: Event Management in the Clinical Laboratory (by ASCLS). Access the complete course and earn ASCLS P.A.C.E.-approved continuing education credits by subscribing online.

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Action Plan Development

The outcome of the Root Cause Analysis process is probable causes and contributing factors for the event. The next step in the Event Management Process is the development of an action plan to resolve consequences of the event and to prevent future occurrences.

Not every event will require an action plan. Determination for the need of an action plan should be based on facts, previous knowledge, and experience.

There are three time frames within which corrective actions can occur:

  1. Immediate Action - occurs as soon as the event is discovered to correct the event or mitigate the event from happening again.
  2. Short-term Action - occurs within a short time from the discovery of the event to correct the event and prevent the event from happening again. These types of actions may serve for an interim until a more permanent preventive action can be implemented.
  3. Long-term Action - occurs long after the event has occured. These types of actions usually require major process changes, span multiple departments and resource aquisitions.