IntelliDOT Drives Awareness of National Medication Errors Crisis

IntelliDOT Corporation, a leading provider of wireless, handheld barcode point-of-care (BPOC) solutions, is leading a campaign to raise patient awareness of the national medication errors crisis – and educating the general public on what to look for when choosing a hospital.

Medication errors are common, even in the one place where patients would expect to be safest:  the hospital.  Serious medication errors cause more than 7,000 hospital deaths and another 400,000 injuries each year. On average, patients are at risk for at least one medication error during each day they spend in the hospital, according to a 2006 study by the Institute of Medicine(1).

“American consumers need to know about the widespread problem of medication errors.  Every patient – infant, child, adult – is at risk.  However, the good news is that many of these medication errors can be prevented at the bedside through the use of effective barcode point-of-care technology,” said Michael E. Donner, vice president marketing and inside sales at IntelliDOT.  “Patients should always be sure they are getting the right medication and dose.  Bedside barcode technology can provide that assurance.”

On Tuesday, March 10, The Oprah Winfrey Show aired a show dedicated to awareness of medical and medication errors.  To illustrate the prevalence of the problem, the broadcast included actor Dennis Quaid, who shared the story of his infant twins, who nearly died last year from a medication error after they received an adult dose of Heparin, a blood thinner, which was 1,000 times the prescribed infant dose.  

During the show, IntelliDOT demonstrated its bedside patient safety solution with a series of three attempted medication passes, with Oprah acting as the patient, Dr. Oz as the caregiver and Dennis Quaid as the assistant.  The first medication was the wrong drug – one that would have caused a serious medical error.  The second medication was the correct drug; the third medication was a drug that, if administered, would have caused a serious allergic reaction.  

The broadcast demonstrated how a simple barcode scanning system, using technology similar to what is deployed in grocery store checkout lines, can be used to ensure the right patients are receiving the right medications in the right doses.  BPOC solutions, such the one IntelliDOT demonstrated during the broadcast, are preventing medication errors at the most critical point:  the patient bedside.

IntelliDOT offers one of the industry’s most economical and effective solutions for preventing serious five rights-related medication errors, keeping both patients and caregivers safe, for hospitals large and small.  Hospitals using the IntelliDOT System safely administer more than 2 million medications each month.

“No matter how careful you are medication errors occur and can be a serious problem in any hospital.  That’s why Health Management Associates (HMA) provided its nurses and patients with a barcode point-of-care solution from IntelliDOT,” said Jim Jordan, senior vice president and chief information officer for HMA.  HMA, based in Naples, Florida, operates a network of 56 hospitals in 15 states with more than 8,000 patient beds.  “With IntelliDOT’s bedside patient safety checks of patient, medication, dose, route and time, we are ensuring that patients are as safe as possible.”

Designed by nurses for nurses, the IntelliDOT System enables caregivers to perform safety checks and safely administer and document medications at the bedside using a lightweight, handheld device.  The IntelliDOT System satisfies Joint Commission standards for patient identification and assures accuracy by verifying the five rights of medication administration: right medication, right dose, right route, right patient, right time.  

The IntelliDOT System provides nurses with patient-specific alerts and reminders and ensures follow-up activities, such as pain scale checks, are performed and documented in a timely manner.

The IntelliDOT System is connected to the hospital pharmacy system and hospital information system through an interface.  Medication orders from the pharmacy system are sent to the nurse’s handheld device.  The IntelliDOT handheld provides nurse-and-patient-specific reminders for medications due.  When the nurse responds to the IntelliDOT System’s prompts at bedside, scanning the patient wristband and medications, the data is sent to the electronic medication administration record.

About IntelliDOT® Corporation

Founded in 2002, IntelliDOT is a leading provider of wireless, handheld, barcode point-of-care (BPOC) solutions to improve bedside patient safety and automate nursing workflow.  Designed by clinicians for clinicians, the IntelliDOT System interoperates with any healthcare information system, connecting caregivers with the information they need at the point-of-care.  The IntelliDOT System satisfies Joint Commission standards for patient identification and assures accuracy by verifying the five rights of medication administration: right medication, right dose, right route, right patient, right time.  Using the IntelliDOT system, nurses can easily manage all tasks associated with medication administration safety checks and related documentation, all without leaving the patient bedside.