10 Most Hazardous Technologies in Healthcare Reviewed
Posted Dec 03 2009 7:02pm
If you read the entire article there are 10, but I’m going to focus on number 7, computerized equipment and system, what I talk about a lot here, the data and the algorithms that run the devices and equipment. When you read that 25% of the medication errors involved some part of technology, that’s a big number.
We do have to work at getting all of this done right. We are to the point today where we need technology to help us manage, as look at all the various medications, treatments and diagnosis's we have today that didn’t exist 10 years ago, or even 5 years ago for that matter. We need technology to help us manage all the information as nobody keeps all of this in their head or on paper for that matter.
The other items discussed are fires, over exposure to radiation and so on. I go back again to implementation and not hurrying and doing it right, but sometimes we have manufacturers with short life lines for cash and they are pressured to make sales to keep the company in business, but in the meantime by making sales numbers, we end up with perhaps a “rushed” implementation and when that occurs we have safety issues. Education and training needs are huge today in every field, but none more so than healthcare.
Mentioned too is are recalls. I posted a free solution to managing that information a while back and wonder why this has never gotten off the ground as it is simple, free and easy to use. Nobody should have to die because a device that had been recalled was implanted, but that happens without a system of technology to manage it.
Anyway, technology can be both an asset and a danger at times, and implementation of a good solid system is king. It’s one thing to identify it, but another to take the bull by the horns and fix it. BD
The ECRI Institute, an independent nonprofit company that evaluates medical devices and processes, has published its list of the 10 most dangerous technological hazards in healthcare.
The organization made its choice and prioritized the order "based on the likelihood and severity of the reports we've received over the past year, the recalls and other actions we've reviewed, and our continuing examination of the published literature," ECRI authors wrote in their introduction
Problems with computerized equipment and systems. Convergence of medical and information technology can improve patient care. But "if systems and interfaces are poorly planned, implemented, or managed, they can threaten patient safety and can lead to inefficiencies, significant interruptions in operations, and uncaptured or lost revenue."
These technologies also carry a risk that patient images or data may be incorrectly transferred or processed, with the result being inaccurate matching of the patient to his or her data. According to the Joint Commission's report in December 2008, 25% of 176,409 medication errors in 2006 involved some aspect of computer technology.