How does distraction result in errors? Its role in car accidents is clear. What about health care? The phone is ringing at the nurse’s station. The patients are putting on their lights asking for help. The IV pump is alarming. In the midst of this, the nurse is trying to give medications.
Distraction can kill patients. A study showed that interrupting a nurse just once in the process of giving medications led to a 12% increase in procedural errors, such as omitting a step in medication preparation like confirming the patient’s identity. There was a 13% increase in clinical errors, such as giving the wrong dose or wrong medication. The more interruptions there were, the more errors occurred.
Listen in as Pat Iyer chats about these points, giving examples of errors caused by destructive distraction:
- Why do experienced nurses make more medication errors?
- How can nurses be protected from the risks of distraction leading to medication errors?
- How accidents can happen in a moment, forever altering your life
- The reasons patients should speak up, ask questions, request attention
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Pat Iyer MSN RN LNCC, a legal nurse consultant, a mother, wife, friend, coach, author, teacher, past president of the American Association of Legal Nurse Consultants and marketer. Pat is learning how to limit her use of technology.
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