Table 1

Potential severity assessment code17

RatingDescriptionCategories used in analyses
1.Incident is likely to have little or no effect on the patient
2.Incident is likely to lead to an increase in level of care, for example, review, investigations, or referral to another clinicianMinor errors
3.Incident is likely to lead to permanent reduction in bodily functioning leading to, for example, increased length of stay; surgical interventionSerious errors
4.Incident is likely to lead to a major permanent loss of function
5.Incident is likely to lead to death