New Palm-Vein Scanning Technology Introduced to Reduce Medical Errors in Hospitals

Our Hartford County, Maryland pharmacy error injury attorneys have been following the latest healthcare technology introduced by New York University’s Langone Medical Center, in an effort to reduce the amount of time it takes to check patients in to the hospital, and to eliminate medical errors.

As our lawyers have discussed in a previous Maryland medication error injury blog, according the Institute of Medicine, there are 1.5 million medication error injuries every year that are preventable, and as many as 98,000 deaths due to medical errors.

The new biometric technology aimed to improve patient safety is made by Fujitsu, the technology services company, and works with the concept that like fingerprints, every patient has an individual and unique palm-vein configuration. The technology uses near-infrared waves to take an image of a patient’s palm veins, which the software then links to that patient’s medical records in about a minute. Other reported benefits of the technology is that a patient does not have to be conscious during the check-in process, and the system eliminates the need for a patient to fill out any forms, unless the patient’s insurance has changed since the last palm scan.

The hospital reportedly experiences around 1.7 million patient visits per year, and is in the process of converting as many patients as possible to the new palm scanning system, to prevent medical errors and patient injury. Since 250 scanners were installed in June, over 25,000 patients have received palm-vein scans that have been registered in the system. The palm scan does not appear in the patient’s medical records, and it is not stored as an image. After the palm is scanned, the image is converted into special numeric code.

In Baltimore, contact our Maryland pharmacy misfill lawyers today at Lebowitz and Mzhen, LLC.

Veins in palms scanned to reduce medical errors at NYC hospital, Reuters, July 27, 2011

Related Web Resources:

U.S. Food and Drug Administration: Medication Error Reports

Institute for Safe Medication Practices, (ISMP)

Related Blog Posts:

Benefits of Robo Pharmacy Technology in Reducing Prescription Errors, Pharmacy Error Injury Lawyer Blog, April 1, 2011
Maryland Hospitals Decrease Medication Error with New Technology, Pharmacy Error Injury Lawyer Blog, November 18, 2010
Study Finds Maryland Hospitals Improve Safety and Health Standards, Pharmacy Error Injury Lawyer Blog, November 17, 2010
Study Shows Barcode eMAR Technology Can Help Reduce Medication Errors, Pharmacy Error Injury Lawyer Blog, November 3, 2010
Medication Error Reduced By “Scanning” Patients for Electronic Records, Pharmacy Error Injury Lawyer Blog, October 28, 2010

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