Nursing

Alarm management plans that improve patient safety

Nurse Leader Insider, November 19, 2015

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The topic of alarm hazards has crowned ECRI's top 10 list of health technology hazards for the last four years. It's no wonder: Spend any amount of time in a hospital, either as an employee or a visitor, and you are bound to be greeted by a barrage of beeps, various alarms, and other sounds.

Studies have shown that healthcare workers are subjected to hundreds of such alarms every shift, and that after a while, the sounds turn into white noise that can be ignored, causing alarm fatigue.

In 2013, The Joint Commission issued Sentinel Event Alert #50 after a study showed that 80 patients had died as a result of alarm-related events. And in 2014, The Joint Commission issued a National Patient Safety Goal (NPSG) on clinical alarms, NPSG.06.01.01, to help hospitals combat this problem. Healthcare systems have had almost two years to determine the most important alarm signals and figure out how to manage those signals within their facilities. Surveyors can ask questions about the 2016 standards now, but the standards will not take effect until January 1, 2016.

To find out how to develop an alarm management plan, click here to read this free article on www.StrategiesForNurseManagers.com.
 



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