• Study
  • Published June 2005

Decisions about critical events in device-related scenarios as a function of expertise.

Using the concepts of "sharp" and "blunt" ends of practice, this article explores health professionals' differing opinions on biomedical device-related errors. Investigators requested that study participants express their views on events surrounding three true-error scenarios. Analysis of the transcribed responses revealed that interpretation varied widely between groups. While clinicians focused on clinical and human factors, biomedical engineers focused on device-related issues, and administrators emphasized documentation and training. The authors conclude that individual expertise largely mediates an error analysis, as no single interpretation provides a comprehensive view of all contributing factors.

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