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Playing it safe

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This issue sees the launch of a new series on diabetes that will span several upcoming issues of the Journal. In his introductory editorial, diabetes series guest editor Colagiuri (doi: 10.5694/mja14.01307) outlines key aspects that will be featured, highlighting an evidence–practice gap that is contributing to the burden of this condition in Australia.

In this issue, we also focus on patient safety. Hillman and colleagues (doi: 10.5694/mja14.01088) discuss the evolution of hospital rapid response systems, which are usually triggered by predefined deviations in patients’ vital signs. They suggest that system-wide engagement is likely to be critical to the success of such systems in improving patient outcomes.

New research from the Concord Medical Emergency Team (MET) Incidents Study (doi: 10.5694/mja14.00647) suggests that the disruption caused by staff leaving normal duties to attend MET calls did not result in major harm to other patients. In their single-centre study, MET call participants were interviewed to ascertain the rate of adverse events and incidents related to their diversion to cover MET calls. After 2663 MET call attendances, participants reported no adverse events and an incident…