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ISMP garners grant

The Institute for Safe Medication Practices (ISMP) will use a $285,000 grant from the Commonwealth Fund-a private foundation that supports independent research on social and health issues-to help hospitals track their medication safety progress.


This grant specifically finances the second phase of the ISMP Medication Safety Self Assessment. The first phase allowed U.S. hospitals to measure their use of 200 medication safety systems and practices, identify weak areas, and collect data to use for later evaluations. ISMP shared the results of Phase I, in which 1,435 hospitals participated, in 2000.


Under Phase II, U.S. hospitals will take an amended ISMP Medication Safety Self Assessment in 2004. Researchers will compare data from Phase II to that of Phase I in an effort to track medication safety progress.



Patient safety survey results

The Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) released its 2003 Patient Safety Survey results, collected from 247 health care leaders across the country. More than 90% of respondents believe technology can improve patient safety and help reduce medication errors.


According to 41% of respondents, at least one information technology staff member is on his or her facility's patient safety committee. Most respondents believe that bar codes used in medication administration and computerized provider order entry (CPOE) (80% and 76%, respectively) will improve patient safety. Though many health care executives favor these initiatives, only 21% report using CPOE; 19% report using bar coding.


Seventy percent of respondents are implementing patient safety tools based on organizational strategy. Health care leaders' motivation for implementing these tools varies: 70% named their facility's strategic mission as one of the top three drivers, and 68% named the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations as a motivating factor. To view additional findings, visit