A Scoping Review of Research Conducted on Patient Safety in Saudi Hospitals

Proceedings of The 3rd Global Conference on Education and Teaching

Year: 2022



A Scoping Review of Research Conducted on Patient Safety in Saudi Hospitals

Yazeed Kaud, Paul O’Connor, Roisin O’Malley, Rosie Dunne, Sinéad Lydon




The Saudi Arabian healthcare system has invested significantly on patient safety initiatives in recent years. However, patient safety and harm reduction remain a key concern as medical liability cases throughout the country continue to rise.

Objectives: The objective of this scoping review was to evaluate existing studies on patient safety in Saudi Arabian hospitals and to identify gaps in the literature.

Methods: Electronic searches were conducted using five databases: Medline, CINAHL, Embase, PsycInfo, and Web of Science. Peer-reviewed studies in English or Arabic that focused on patient safety in Saudi Arabian hospitals were evaluated. The Measuring and Monitoring Safety Framework was used to categorise studies relevant to measuring and monitoring safety. The hierarchy of intervention effectiveness was used to categorise interventions studies.

Results: After searching 2,489 citations and 138 full-text papers, 67 studies were included. In total, 61 (91%) of included studies were concerned with the measurement or monitoring of safety. Six studies (9%) were focused on interventions to improve patient safety. Of these, 31.3% of the studies assessed past harm, 1.5% reliability of safety systems, 7.5% sensitivity to operations, 46.3% anticipation and preparedness, and 3% (2/67) integration and learning. Of the six (9%) intervention studies, 1.5% reported a forcing functions intervention, 1.5% simplification and standardisation, 3% considered rules and policies, and 3% detailed education and training.

Conclusion: There is substantial research in Saudi Arabia on measuring and monitoring safety in hospitals, but a paucity of evidence on interventions to improve safety. This review has revealed areas of strength, redundancy, and gaps in patient safety research in the Kingdom.

keywords: hospital, patient safety, Saudi Arabia, scoping review, secondary care.