ECRI Names Top 10 Health Technology Hazards for 2014

Data Integrity Failures in EHRs and other Health IT Makes Annual List

The Emergency Care Research Institute (ECRI) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to bringing applied scientific research to enable improvement of patient care. The organization is a designated Evidence-Based Practice Center by the U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality and listed as a federal Patient Safety Organization by HHS.

The institute has just released its 2014 Top 10 Health Technology Hazards. The list highlights the technology safety topics the Institute feels warrants particular attention for the coming year. The Institute makes clear that “the list is not comprehensive, nor will all of the hazards listed here be applicable at all healthcare facilities.” The Institute wants to “encourage facilities to use the list as a starting point for patient safety discussions and for setting their health technology safety priorities.”

The 2014 list highlights the top 10 safety topics for the new year. A 16-page executive brief about the hazards is available for free. The brief describes safety issues resulting from the following 10 technologies:

1. Alarm Hazards
2. Infusion Pump Medication Errors
3. CT Radiation Exposure in Pediatric Patients
4. Data Integrity Failures in EHRs and other Health IT Systems
5. Occupational Radiation Hazards in Hybrid ORs
6. Inadequate Reprocessing of Endoscopes and Surgical Instruments
7. Neglecting Change Management for Networked Devices and Systems
8. Risks to Pediatric Patients from “Adult” Technologies
9. Robotic Surgery Complications due to Insufficient Training
10. Retained Devices and Unretrieved Fragments

“Technology safety can often be overlooked,” says James P. Keller, Jr., vice president, health technology evaluation and safety, ECRI Institute. “Based on our experience, there are serious safety problems that need to be addressed. ECRI Institute recommends that hospitals use our list as a guide to help prioritize their technology-related safety initiatives.”

Learn more about ECRI’s Top 10 Health Technology Hazards for 2014 here.