I.V. ROUNDS: Using an infusion pump safely

October 2006 
Volume 36  Number 10
Pages 24 - 24
  PDF Version Available!



Barbara Jacobs is director of critical care at George Washington University Hospital in Washington, D.C. She served as her facility's Value Analysis Committee co-chair during selection and implementation of the safety infusion system.

MANUAL PROGRAMMING errors cause two out of three infusion pump–related deaths in hospitals each year. In this article, I'll describe the safety measures my facility implemented to keep a missed key or missed decimal from having dramatic consequences. Our safety requirements included:

* On-board drug library per care area and standardized drug concentrations. The sophisticated new infusion systems (smart pumps) contain advanced drug libraries that let a facility list medications in department-specific categories, establish standardized concentrations for these medications, and set minimum and maximum dosing parameters for each medication.For example, when you program the pump for a particular therapy, you select the medication and ...

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