Patient safety

Innovations

Computerized Alerts Significantly Reduce D-Dimer Testing to Diagnose Blood Clots in Elderly Patients, Increase Use of More Accurate Alternative 05/06/11

Pop-up alerts significantly reduce D-dimer testing to diagnose venous thromboembolism in elderly patients, increasing use of a more accurate alternative imaging test instead.

Algorithm-Based Decision Support System Guides Trauma Staff During Initial Treatment, Leading to Fewer Medical Errors 05/04/11

A computerized decision support system uses algorithms and real-time patient information to guide the resuscitation of trauma patients, leading to fewer medical errors.

Telemedicine Consultations With Emergency Department Physicians Reduce Unnecessary Transfers of Nursing Home Residents in Rural Areas 04/30/11

A collaborative telemedicine program between a hospital and 10 nursing homes in rural communities prevents unnecessary transports of residents to the emergency department.

Nurse–Physician Infection Prevention Teams Conduct Rounds and Provide Support to Frontline Clinicians, Leading to Fewer Health Care-Associated Infections 04/28/11

Physician–nurse infection prevention teams round on hospital units at least weekly, leading to a 70-percent decline in central line–associated infections and very low rates of surgical site infections.

Imaging Protocol Sharply Reduces Overuse of Cervical Spine X-Rays for Emergency Department Trauma Patients 04/19/11

A simple protocol significantly reduces overuse of cervical spine x-rays in emergency department patients with traumatic injury.

Postdischarge Followup Calls to Skilled Nursing Facilities Reduce Heart Failure Readmissions by Two-Thirds 04/10/11

Hospital case managers telephone skilled nursing facility nurses within 48 hours of each heart failure patient's discharge to verify that appropriate care management is being provided, leading to a significant reduction in readmissions and associated cost savings.

Emergency Department Protocol Leads to Faster Identification and Treatment of Pediatric Patients With Sepsis 04/10/11

A “shock” protocol involving computerized flagging of abnormal vital signs and initiation of treatment based on standardized order sets led to faster identification and treatment of children with suspected sepsis in the emergency department.

Algorithm Guides Test Ordering for Patients With Suspected Pulmonary Embolism, Improving Patient Safety by Reducing Unnecessary Radiation Exposure 04/08/11

A hospital emergency department uses a simple algorithm and related tools to guide physician ordering of imaging studies for stable patients with suspected pulmonary embolism, leading to the provision of safer care by reducing unnecessary radiation exposure for patients.

Hospital-Wide Inpatient Screening for Alcohol Withdrawal and Algorithm-Driven Treatment Improve Care and Reduce Acute Delirium Episodes 03/30/11

An algorithm-driven program combines hospital-wide inpatient screening for alcohol withdrawal risk, monitoring of at-risk patients, and medical treatment of symptoms, leading to more patients being diagnosed, fewer acute episodes of delirium, and improved care for patients experiencing such episodes.

Electronic Alerts, Patient Education, and Performance Reports Improve Adherence to Guideline Designed to Reduce Early Elective Inductions 03/29/11

Electronic alerts, patient education, and provider performance reports promote adherence to a guideline covering early elective inductions, leading to a significant decline in such inductions, shorter average labor, and fewer newborn complications.

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