Accreditation

Sentinel Event Alert targets technology-related medical errors

Accreditation Connection, December 11, 2008

The Joint Commission has released its latest Sentinel Event Alert, this time looking at prevention of technology-related healthcare errors.

The Alert states that there is very little data documenting the frequency with which technology-related errors occur, but notes that computers and automated medication dispensing devices are frequently involved when an error occurs. The Alert also advocates using Joint Commission Information Management standards to improve the use of technology in the healthcare environment.

The Joint Commission suggests 13 steps to prevent healthcare technology errors, including training for new users and refresher courses for those who continue to use technology in the hospital, and clearly defining who is authorized and responsible for the technology.

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