The purpose of risk Assessment and management in Healthcare
The purpose of risk management strategies is to ensure that informed plans of intervention are in place for the individual. Risks can be both of a negative and positive nature, though the risks a person my pose to others is usually only negative.
A risk could also be a positive thing as the individual may actually gain from it i.e. learn a new skill, increase skills or increase confidence levels.
The two areas that risk assessments are carried out in terms of are;
a. The risk that a person poses to others – their dangerousness and
b. The risk that a person may be subject to – their vulnerability.
There are two techniques that are used for the assessment of risks and these are Actuarial Assessment and Clinical Assessment.
Actuarial assessment is the statistical calculation of a risk and was developed by the insurance industry and it focuses on probabilities in terms of percentages. This method is seen to be more accurate than a clinical assessment though it is reliant on research findings which then rely on the frequency of the risk to ensure accuracy. This in turn may limit the solutions as it offers no understanding of the risks or possible effects of that risk only a prediction of the likelihood of that risk.
Clinical assessment though having a poor record of accuracy is a more individual assessment method based on professional judgement of the risks though the main problems being that it can be value based and subjective.
Neither of these methods of assessment are fail safe and evidence shows that no risk assessment can be completely accurate.