A Big Step Forward for Patient Safety
Reducing adverse drug events is vital to all healthcare organizations, and medication management solutions can significantly reduce errors and increase patient peace of mind. Implementing the electronic medication administration record (eMAR) helps hospitals ensure the Five Rights of Medication Safety: that the right patient receives the right drug at the right dose, at the right time, with the right method of administration.
Scanning bar codes on patient wristbands and medications at all points of care efficiently meets mandates for increased patient safety and supports higher staff productivity.
Bar Coding Leads the Way
In a typical eMAR process, a physician writes an order for medication, the pharmacist dispenses bar coded single doses, and the doses are delivered to a mobile medication cart. Before rounds, a staff nurse reviews the administration schedule.
At the patient bedside, a nurse scans both the patient's and the medication's bar codes before administering the drugs. The bar code on the patient's wristband accesses the patient's electronic health record (EHR) to verify the order for that medication. (Patient wristbands and EHRs can also contain information on allergies, drug interactions, duplicate therapies, and potential dosage errors.)
Verification at the Point of Care
The nurse reviews any warning messages that result from "Five Rights" verification and determines if further actions are needed before proceeding. As he or she completes medication administration, every action is recorded, and data is added to the patient's EHR. All of this greatly reduces the risk of giving a wrong medication or dosage to a patient.
Carts Play a Strong Supporting Role
Mobile carts work very well for electronic medication administration. They have become lighter and stronger, with better battery life, and cart vendors customize the equipment to fit the unique needs of their clients.
Caregivers can load a mobile cart with medications for multiple patients. It's also a convenient place to keep wireless barcode scanners handy for wristband scans. The cart set-up enables nurses to work through the hospital's medication administration software in real-time and have an active work list on screen while administering meds.
Carts are more costly than mobile devices, which has motivated some organizations to explore replacing carts in various acute care departments with small notebooks or tablet PCs. However, mobile carts currently remain the preferred medication administration solution for many. Nurses like having a larger screen with bigger fonts, a mouse, and spot to place items when administering care.
More Time to Observe and Interact
Since they have a functional mobile work area, nurses spend much more time face to face with patients, which is reassuring for the patients and their families. Instead of jotting down notes and then documenting activities at a nursing station, nurses are making observations and inputting data real-time at the patient's bedside, which gives them more time to interact and observe. As a result, clinical notes are more thorough, and documentation is timely.
A Checkup for Your Fleet
Ensure that your technology is optimized to work properly the first time—every time—with cart management, wireless, and workflow assessments. Connection assessments help you understand the strengths and weaknesses of your network, increase productivity, and discover opportunities to improve clinician workflow.
- Without proper maintenance, carts can break down, disrupting patient care and frustrating clinicians and staff. Our Fleet Management Assessment includes a multi-point inspection of your cart fleet, a prioritized list of carts and recommended service, a thorough analysis of cart fleet performance characteristics, cart health rating, and recommendations for enhancements and improvements for better performance.
- Significant time is lost when sessions are dropped and clinicians have to re-login to applications. If you're experiencing poor wireless performance or considering a move to 802.11n, we can provide the resources and knowledge to optimize your wireless network.
- Healthcare environments are unique—they require fine-tuning to achieve an optimal workflow with the correct mix of technologies, policies, and resources. Our Clinical Workflow Assessment enables you to address patient service demands and reduce constraints on your infrastructure and staff
To learn more about our healthcare-focused assessments that can help increase clinician and IT productivity, save time and resources, extend cart life, and reduce TCO, complete our Information Request Form or contact an
Account Executive at 1-800-369-1047.