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Jim Piepenbrink: How Do You Handle Tough Healthcare Technology Challenges?

July 5, 2016

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At the AAMI Annual Conference & Expo last month, I was very fortunate to participate in a workshop on alarm management that was presented by the AAMI Foundation and the Healthcare Technology Foundation. At the beginning of the workshop, all of the AAMI Foundation’s patient safety initiatives were profiled. A new one is set to […]

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Tim Vanderveen: Imagine the Possibilities

September 2, 2015

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I think it is safe to say that greater than 95% of infusion pumps are not associated with the patient for whom the drugs and fluids are being infused. With the exception of a small but growing number of hospitals that have pump and information technology (IT) integration—and a few more where the nurses key […]

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Paul McGurgan: Using Data to Solve the Alarm Problem

March 9, 2015

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Whether you work in a 75-bed community healthcare organization or a 1,000-bed teaching hospital, you’re probably putting considerable effort into determining how your facility will address the requirements of The Joint Commission’s National Patient Safety Goal on alarm systems safety while trying to understand how it will affect patient outcomes and satisfaction as well as […]

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Frank E. Block, Jr.: Will Surveillance Alarm Systems for Opioid-Induced Respiratory Depression Make Things Better or Worse?

February 12, 2015

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AAMI and other organizations have been urging hospitals to address the problem of deaths from opioid-induced respiratory depression by installing surveillance alarm systems for all patients who are receiving opioids. But would such systems actually work? Ideally, one would perform a suitable study to investigate the issue. The objection is that such a study would […]

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Mary Logan: ‘Tis the Season for Dreams Coming True

December 24, 2014

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Celebrating Christmas as a child was magical because in my imaginary world it was about making dreams come true. My mom would say, “Don’t let your imagination run away with you,” which made me more determined in my conviction that dreams do come true. Even my dolls had visions of sugar plum fairies, and I […]

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Maureen F. Cooney: Technology Alone Is Not the Answer for Effective Patient Monitoring

December 16, 2014

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Continuous monitoring of patients receiving opioid therapy to prevent opioid-related respiratory depression certainly offers the hope of reducing devastating outcomes from our well-intended efforts to assure patient comfort. However, in this climate of rapid, high-tech, outcomes-driven healthcare, it is essential to keep in mind the end user—particularly the bedside nurse. In most hospitals, nurses employed […]

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Laurence Pritchett: The Fear of Technology in Healthcare

November 21, 2014

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There is a belief and hope today that technology will solve all our problems. Well, it won’t! Technology can go a long way to help with patient safety and administering the best care to patients, but it isn’t a panacea. There is also a fear of technology: What it is, what it does, is it […]

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William Hyman: Learning from Nonactionable Clinical Alarms

October 6, 2014

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One of the accepted challenges in better utilization of clinical alarm systems is the large number of nonactionable alarms and their adverse effect on overall patient care. Nonactionable alarms are those that summon a caregiver to the bedside, but do not result in clinical intervention once the caregiver is at the bedside and can assess […]

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Tim Vanderveen: Don’t Approach the Challenges of Pump Alarms with a Broad Brush

May 28, 2014

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Last month’s inaugural meeting of the National Coalition for Alarm Management Safety prompted me to consider how much we have learned about the effective management of clinical alarms—and how much we have yet to learn. I had the opportunity to provide some data on infusion pump alarms and alerts collected over a three- month period […]

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William Hyman: Beep, Beep

April 21, 2014

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There was an interesting thread recently on the listserv for the National Patient Safety Foundation on whether medication barcode readers should beep (or make some other noise) when read. Such systems are typically part of medication “verification” and serve to populate the electronic health record. Since the medication administration remains manual in most cases, the […]

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