Background Smart pumps, including an IV medication error prevention drug library, alert operators if a drug dosage is programmed out of its predetermined safety dose limits. The timely intervention reduces medication errors and improves patient safety. The drug library data are collected via wireless technology and can be analysed to permanently adapt and optimise the smart pump system. Until now there has been no working knowledge about the management of smart infusion pumps in the investigated country.
Purpose The objective of this project was to carry out the first analysis of smart infusion pumps in a cardiothoracic intensive care unit of a university medical centre to identify problems with smart pumps and optimise the system (eg, handling and acceptance of pumps and management of alerts).
Material and methods With the help of the programme DoseTrac, the drug library data were evaluated over a period of 8 months (January 2016 to August 2016). Adherence of the drug library and all types of errors were analysed. Hard limits were not determined, so only soft limits and technical alerts were proved in detail. By means of the standard database, a special look was taken on drugs with a high alert priority (eg categories, infusion type). A questionnaire for the operators about administration and acceptance was developed to optimise the infusion pump system.
Results Adherence of the drug library was 93%. There were many soft limit alerts (1085), mostly triggered by adrenaline, noradrenaline or insulin. Adaption of these limits is indispensable to prevent alarm fatigue of the operator. 31 alerts were attributed to technical errors, so the users should be educated about the technical conditions. High alerting drugs belonged to categories such as cardiovascular, blood coagulation and analgesia. A questionnaire will show which problems occur during everyday work and how the pumps are accepted.
Conclusion The periodic data analysis seemed to be essential to adapt to permanent changes to reduce alerts. According to the DoseTrac report, acceptance of the drug library was high (93%), but the questionnaire will show if the operators really recognise the benefits of smart pumps.
References and/or acknowledgements Thank you to the intensive care unit for good collaboration.
No conflict of interest
Statistics from Altmetric.com
If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.