Children’s Hospital Launches Initiative to Prevent Medication Error

After two children died from medication errors at Seattle Children’s Hospital over a period of 18 months, as our Baltimore, Maryland medication error injury lawyers recently discussed in a blog, the staff of the hospital held a special ‘Zero Errors Initiative’ Patient Safety Day on Saturday, to prevent tragic medication errors like these from happening to children in the future.

According to the Seattle Post Intelligencer, over 550 physicians, staff, pharmacists, and nurses convened at the hospital for special patient safety sessions, focusing on training designed to prevent future incidents of medication and pharmacy errors.

Pat Hagan, the president of Children’s Hospital reportedly stated that these tragedies and the harm that was done to these children by the hospital will never be forgotten. Hagan said this has been a profound tragedy for the families, and for the hospital staff, and that this feeling will propel the hospital to continue to find ways to prevent life-threatening medication errors from happening.

The sessions during the safety training day included topics such as strengthening the safety of verbal orders, standardizing children’s medications located on care units, prescribing, dispensing and administering medications that are high-risk, improving communication between providers when handing off patients, and patient safety training with the use of simulation.

The hospital has also begun to reevaluate the entire medication delivery system process, and has initiated a detailed investigation into how the hospital’s safety processes in each of the medication errors failed, that lead to the death of two children.

As our Baltimore pharmacy misfill attorneys discussed in a related blog, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) recently stated that medical errors are one of the top causes personal injury and death across the country. In a recent study, the AHRQ reported that rates for potential adverse drug events in hospitals were three times higher with children than adults, with an even higher rate for babies in intensive care units.

In Baltimore, Maryland, contact our medication error attorneys at Lebowitz and Mzhen, LLC today.

Children’s Hospital Launches ‘Zero Errors’ Initiative, The Seattle Post Intelligencer, October 30, 2010
Medication Errors Like Those at Children’s Common, Underreported, The Seattle Post-Intelligencer, October 1, 2010
Despite Law, Medical Errors Likely Go Unreported, The Seattle Post-Intelligencer, September 27, 2010

Related Web Resources:

20 Tips to Help Prevent Medical Errors in Children: Patient Fact Sheet, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Institute of Medicine (IOM)

U.S. Food and Drug Administration: Medication Error Reports
Institute for Safe Medication Practices, (ISMP)

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