Journal Article

Identification of inpatient DNR status: a safety hazard begging for standardization.

Sehgal NL, Wachter RM. Journal of Hospital Medicine. 2007;2.

This survey of nurse leaders at academic medical centers found great variation in the method used to document patients' do-not-resuscitate (DNR) status. Documentation could be found in the paper chart or electronic medical record, by means of a color-coded wristband, or combinations of these sources. Multiple wristband colors were used to indicate DNR status at different hospitals. This lack of standardization has been recognized as a patient safety problem, and resources exist to create standardized wristbands. The authors call for development of national standards for DNR documentation. In the same issue, the authors share an anecdote (see Associated Image link below) of a patient transferred from one acute facility to another with confusion that resulted from his multiple color-coded wristbands.