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- Emergency Nursing
Journal Article > Commentary
Larson LA, Finley JL, Gross TL, et al. Jt Comm J Qual Patient Saf. 2019:45:72-80.
Workplace violence in the health care setting is common and poses an ongoing risk for providers and staff. The Joint Commission issued a sentinel event alert to raise awareness about the risks associated with physical and verbal violence against health care workers and suggests numerous strategies organizations can use to address the problem, including establishing reporting systems and developing quality improvement interventions. The authors describe a quality improvement initiative involving the development and iterative testing of a huddle handoff tool to optimize communication between the emergency department (ED) and an admitting unit regarding patients with the potential for violent behavior. The huddle tool led to improved perceptions of safety during the patient transfer process by both the ED nurses and the admitting medical units. An accompanying editorial highlights the importance of taking a systems approach to address workplace safety. A PSNet perspective explored how a medical center developed a process to identify, prioritize, and mitigate hazards in health care settings.
Journal Article > Study
National study on the frequency, types, causes, and consequences of voluntarily reported emergency department medication errors.
Pham JC, Story JL, Hicks RW, et al. J Emerg Med. 2011;40:485-492.
A 2006 Institute of Medicine report highlighted growing concerns about the state of emergency department (ED) care, particularly around overcrowding and its impact on safety. Medication errors are a known safety threat, and this study provides a cross-sectional perspective using reports from the MEDMARX database. Investigators found that physicians were responsible for 24% of errors while nurses were responsible for 54%. The administration phase was the most error-prone, and the most common error type was improper dose/quantity. Interestingly, computerized provider order entry was noted to cause 2.5% of the errors reported. The authors advocate for future interventions to improve medication safety in the ED. A past AHRQ WebM&M commentary discussed a near miss medication error in the ED that illustrates the many safety issues that contribute to this high-risk care setting.
Cases & Commentaries
- Web M&M
Donna L. Washington, MD, MPH; January 2004
A triage nurse instructed by a physician to immediately bring a febrile child, who was possibly dehydrated, to the treatment area is stopped by the charge nurse, citing overcrowding. The parents seek treatment elsewhere; upon arrival, the child is in full arrest.