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How to make incident reporting easier in Primary Care

Common problems with incident reporting in Primary Care Organisations and how to fix them.
| Andrew Bingham | Healthcare

Patient safety is the cornerstone of any successful healthcare system. In primary care, safety concerns can be exceptionally nuanced, requiring meticulous attention from healthcare providers. Traditional methods for reporting incidents often contribute to inefficiencies, data loss, and missed opportunities for improvement.

Problems with Incident Reporting in Primary Care

It’s common for incidents to be reported on paper initially, scribbled down on a scrap or in a paper form ready to be typed up later. When healthcare staff must jot down incidents on paper for later entry into a system, the data can get lost or go unreported. This leads to gaps in understanding the scope and severity of patient safety issues.

Another challenge with older reporting systems is their cumbersome nature. Filling out paper forms or navigating slow, clunky digital platforms can discourage staff from reporting incidents promptly. The more cumbersome the process, the more likely staff will neglect to report incidents.

As well as this, staff are often unsure about what exactly constitutes an 'incident.' When guidelines are unclear, potential safety issues can go unreported, limiting opportunities for corrective actions.

Furthermore, with enough already on their plate, staff need to prioritise immediate patient care and see as many patients as they can during the day to alleviate the backlog. This can lead to incident reporting being pushed further down the list of priorities to the point where it can get lost in the muddle altogether.

How Going Digital Can Help

A modern digital oversight system provides a quicker and easier means of capturing incident data, making it less burdensome for staff to report issues. A digital platform enables incidents to be reported directly into the system, cutting down on the steps required and thus saving precious time.

Also, digital solutions are more interactive and can offer on-the-spot guidance on what constitutes an incident, helping staff make more informed decisions about what to report.

Most importantly, digital systems offer triangulated reports in real-time dashboards that allow key users to see what’s going on, and why it’s happening and create an aligned action plan to improve.

Incident Oversight from InPhase

InPhase’s digital incident reporting system is up to 45% faster at capturing necessary data than other systems. By having the option to show only required questions, it streamlines the process. The system is easily accessible through QR codes scanned via phones or tablets or links on PC desktops , thus reducing barriers to incident reporting.

InPhase offers handy advice throughout the form-filling process to assist users who may be unsure how to answer certain questions. The system instantly uploads incident reports to the national LFPSE and a local database, providing primary care healthcare providers with complete oversight of incidents for learning and identifying problem areas.

Through triangulation of incidents, complaints, risks, CQC self-assessments, audits and action plans, InPhase also enables primary healthcare providers to create actions that link directly to incidents, complaints and risks and track impact so users can clearly see if an improvement plan is working to reduce specific incidents, facilitating targeted improvements and encouraging staff to report more incidents as they can clearly see the benefit and impact of their actions.


Transitioning to am InPhase digital incident reporting system can significantly improve the quality and efficiency of patient safety in primary care. The advantages range from quickening the incident reporting process to presenting incident data in real-time dashboards for complete oversight that facilitates learning and improvement. It's high time primary care settings take the digital leap to ensure patient safety is a top priority, effectively captured, and systematically improved.

To find out how Oversight can help your Primary Care Organisation, schedule your time with an advisor today.

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Andrew Bingham

Chief Operating Officer

Andrew is responsible for our account managers and customer success team, tasked with helping our customers make the most of the opportunities presented by our product features and key business responsibilities of customer retention, adoption and expansion.

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