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Uploaded on May 27, 2011
Design-based regulation and patient safety: A regulatory studies perspective Karen Yeung, and Mary Dixon-Woods
Patient safety remains an important problem in healthcare, and an increasingly influential argument calls for technical or "design-based" solutions to prevent errors. We show how, by designing out the possibility of professional agency and discretion, design-based approaches may have significant social, political and ethical implications. Using design-based regulation is largely unproblematic when everyone agrees on constitutes good medical practice. But it becomes much more challenging when there is lack of consensus on what constitutes an error or on the appropriate solution. Use of patient safety technology must be sensitive to the values and motives that get encoded in design.