Buy this Article for $10.95

Have a coupon or promotional code? Enter it here:

When you buy this you'll get access to the ePub version, a downloadable PDF, and the ability to print the full article.

Authors

  1. Morrish, Wendy MSN, RN, CNL-C
  2. Soncrant, Christina MPH
  3. Walsh-Irwin, Colleen DNP, RN, AACC, FAANP
  4. Kulju, Stephen MS, CCE
  5. Gunnar, William MD, JD

Abstract

Background: Cardiac telemetry downtime may be planned or unplanned, causing a disruption in telemetry services with a potential to impact patient safety.

 

Problem: Many cardiac telemetry units in the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) have contingency plans that do not adequately address telemetry downtime.

 

Approach: This is a retrospective quality improvement analysis of VHA-reported cardiac telemetry downtime events from October 1, 2014, to Mar 31, 2020.

 

Outcomes: Of 98 events, no patient harm was reported; 13% (n = 13) were planned downtime, 82% (n = 80) were unplanned downtime, 18% (n = 18) reported contingency plan use, 78% (n = 76) did not specify contingency plan use, and 32% (n = 31) reported events lasting 31 minutes to 6 hours in duration.

 

Conclusions: The majority of reported cardiac telemetry downtime events were unplanned and without documented contingency plans. A robust contingency plan with defined staff roles and responsibilities will serve to lessen anxiety during downtimes and mitigate potential risk of patient harm.