Texas Children's Hospital Wins ECRI Institute's 10th Annual Health Devices Achievement Award for Its Alarm Management Initiative

ECRI Institute recognizes Houston-area children's hospital for excellence in health technology management and patient safety

Feb 02, 2016, 12:05 ET from ECRI Institute

PLYMOUTH MEETING, Pa., Feb. 2, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- ECRI Institute is pleased to announce Texas Children's Hospital in Houston as the winner of its 10th Annual Health Devices Achievement Award. The award recognizes an outstanding initiative undertaken by an ECRI Institute member health care institution that improves patient safety, reduces costs, or otherwise facilitates better strategic management of health technology.

The winning submission, "Alarm Management Reboot," describes Texas Children's successful effort to improve patient safety by incorporating enterprise-wide alarm management practices to make alarms more meaningful and actionable.

Spearheading the project, Texas Children's alarm management steering team started with a baseline analysis of the current alarm management program. The team also laid out the Joint Commission's National Patient Safety Goal into an action plan, which designated specific operations necessary to meet the phases of the patient safety goal. Ultimately, Texas Children's partnered with an outside organization to develop an alarm dashboard—a system that allowed the team to collect and analyze alarm data by care area, by nurse, and by patient. Simple changes soon progressed into patient-specific alarm dashboards that helped the care team make decisions around alarm settings.

"We realized that substantive changes were needed to shift focus from the number of alarms, to actionable information based on an analytic dashboard," said John Weimert, director of biomedical engineering at Texas Children's. "This project aligned people, technology, and governance to meet the common goal of improving patient safety."

"ECRI congratulates Texas Children's for their winning submission. With the Joint Commission's 2016 patient safety goal on the minds of hospital leaders, this project came at the perfect time. The team did an admirable job of revamping their alarm management program with an in-depth assessment of the environment at the patient's bedside," says ECRI Institute's David Jamison, executive director, health technology evaluation and safety.

"The actionable approach Texas Children's took to stop alarm fatigue provides a good example for hospitals nationwide," added Jamison.

A formal award presentation will be made at Texas Children's in spring 2016. Texas Children's award-winning strategy will be featured in an upcoming article on ECRI Institute's website.

ECRI Institute also recognizes four additional organizations that were selected as finalists for the 10th Annual Health Devices Achievement Award. The technology management initiatives described by these organizations (listed below in alphabetical order) likewise earned praise from the award selection committee:

  • Banner Health (Phoenix, AZ): "How a Safe Surgery Program Can Reduce Serious Reportable Events and Assist Supply Chain Decision Making for RFID Technology"
  • Boston Medical Center (Boston, MA): "Clinical Alarm Task Force"
  • Cooper University Health Care (Camden, NJ): "Partnership between Supply Chain and Process Improvement: An Optimal Structure"
  • University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (Pittsburgh, PA): "Medical Equipment Fleet Analysis: An Objective and Centralized Approach to Equipment Replacement"

For more information about ECRI Institute's Health Devices Achievement Award or about becoming a member of ECRI Institute's medical technology procurement and management programs, contact ECRI Institute at (610) 825-6000, ext. 5891; visit www.ecri.org; e-mail clientservices@ecri.org; or mail to ECRI Institute, 5200 Butler Pike, Plymouth Meeting, PA 19462.

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About ECRI Institute
ECRI Institute (www.ecri.org), a nonprofit organization, dedicates itself to bringing the discipline of applied scientific research to healthcare to discover which medical procedures, devices, drugs, and processes enable improved patient care. As pioneers in this science for nearly 50 years, ECRI Institute marries experience and independence with the objectivity of evidence-based research. Strict conflict-of-interest guidelines ensure objectivity. ECRI Institute is designated an Evidence-based Practice Center by the U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. ECRI Institute PSO is listed as a federally certified Patient Safety Organization by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Find ECRI Institute on Facebook (www.facebook.com/ECRIInstitute) and on Twitter (www.twitter.com/ECRI_Institute).

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