Background: In pediatric intensive care, prescription, administration, and interpretation of drug doses are weight-dependent. The use of standardized concentrations simplifies the preparation of drugs and increases safety. For safe administration as well as easy interpretation of intravenous drug dosing regimens with standardized concentrations, the display of weight-related dose rates on the infusion device is of pivotal significance.
Objectives: We report on challenges in the implementation of a new information technology-supported medication workflow. The workflow was introduced on eight beds in the pediatric heart surgery intensive care unit as well as in the pediatric anesthesia at the University of Bonn Medical Center. The proposed workflow utilizes medication labels generated from prescription data from the electronic health record. The generated labels include a 2D barcode to transfer data to the infusion devices. Methods Clinical and technical processes were agilely developed. The reliability of the system under real-life conditions was monitored. User satisfaction and potential for improvement were assessed. In addition, a structured survey among the nursing staff was carried out. The questionnaire addressed usability as well as the end-users’ perception of effects on patient safety.
Results: The workflow has been applied 44111 times during the pilot phase. A total of 114 known failures in the technical infrastructure were observed. The survey showed good ratings for usability and safety (median “school grade” 2 or B for patient safety, intelligibility, patient identification and handling). The medical management of the involved acute care facilities rated the process as clearly beneficial regarding patient safety, suggesting a rollout to all pediatric intensive care areas.
Conclusions: A medical information technology-supported medication workflow can increase user satisfaction and patient safety as perceived by the clinical end-users in pediatric acute care. The successful implementation benefits from an interdisciplinary team, active investigation of possible associated risks, and technical redundancy.Reference:
Erdfelder F, Ebach F, Zoller R, Walterscheid V, Weiss C, Kappler J, Görtzen-Patin J, Schmitt J, Freudenthal NJ, Ksellmann A, Grigutsch D, Külshammer M, Füssel M, Zenker S. Implementation of 2D barcode medication labels and smart pumps in pediatric acute care: Lessons learned. Appl Clin Inform. 2023 Apr 19. doi: 10.1055/a-2077-2457. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 37075805.