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Culture of Safety Related to Health Information Technology

Culture of Safety Related to Health Information Technology

Culture of Safety Related to Health Information Technology

Incidents in IT are broken down into two types. The first is when a person does not use the IT system in the correct manner. Where I work, this is most noted with older nurses who haven’t had the privy of using computers their entire life but can happen with anyone. The second is related to problems within the software or system. I can’t recall any time that I’ve seen this occur where I’m currently employed.

In the case study on page 13, it describes an incident where the eMAR was cutting off the end of certain medication names. This one involved an extended release morphine and an immediate release morphine which led to a patient being given wrong doses and ending up in respiratory failure. Luckily, the patient was intubated and recovered from the incident. This was a problem with the software and not due to any human error when interfacing with it. This is a serious error and could’ve resulted in the patient’s death. This led to the IT developer correcting the issue (Wallace, Zimmer, Possanza, Giannini, & Solomon, 2013).

Now, although the case study showed a major error, research shows a significant reduction in medication errors with use of health information technology (Lee, 2018). In order for nursing leaders to establish a safety of culture related to IT, I feel we need to understand the possible ways that errors can occur with its use. This information needs to be disseminated to the rest of the nursing staff so that any errors are avoided. We need to have a channel for our nurses to be able to voice technical problems and make sure they get fixed in a timely manner. We also need to make sure that our nurses are trained adequately in the use of our software. There are many forms of HIT out there and each one has specific nuances. Also, for those that are not tech savvy, they may need additional training to become competent with the programs used.


Lee, T. Y. (2018, January 1). The use of information technology to enhance patient safety and nursing efficiency . Studies In Health Technology And Informatics250, 192. Retrieved from…

Wallace, C., Zimmer, K. P., Possanza, L., Giannini, R., & Solomon, R. (2013). How to Identify and Address Unsafe Conditions Associated with Health IT. Retrieved from…

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