PRACTICE REPORT. Continuous quality improvement using intelligent infusion pump data analysis

Breland, Burnis D.
September 2010
American Journal of Health-System Pharmacy;9/1/2010, Vol. 67 Issue 17, p1446
Academic Journal
Purpose. The use of continuous quality-improvement (CQI) processes in the implementation of intelligent infusion pumps in a community teaching hospital is described. Summary. After the decision was made to implement intelligent i.v. infusion pumps in a 413-bed, community teaching hospital, drug libraries for use in the safety software had to be created. Before drug libraries could be created, it was necessary to determine the epidemiology of medication use in various clinical care areas. Standardization of medication administration was performed through the CQI process, using practical knowledge of clinicians at the bedside and evidence-based drug safety parameters in the scientific literature. Post-implementation, CQI allowed refinement of clinically important safety limits while minimizing inappropriate, meaningless soft limit alerts on a few select agents. Assigning individual clinical care areas (CCAs) to individual patient care units facilitated customization of drug libraries and identification of specific CCA compliance concerns. Between June 2007 and June 2008, there were seven library updates. These involved drug additions and deletions, customization of individual CCAs, and alterations of limits. Overall compliance with safety software use rose over time, from 33% in November 2006 to over 98% in December 2009. Many potentially clinically significant dosing errors were intercepted by the safety software, prompting edits by end users. Only 4--6% of soft limit alerts resulted in edits. Conclusion. Compliance rates for use of infusion pump safety software varied among CCAs over time. Education, auditing, and refinement of drug libraries led to improved compliance in most CCAs.


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