Pilot Study: BCMA Barriers and Workarounds Among ICU/CCU Nurses

Statement of Problem: Since the Institute of Medicine (IOM) presented their findings in 1999 on medical errors, the healthcare industry has dedicated tremendous effort to addressing the problem of ensuring patient safety. Great strides have been made in achieving the IOM goal through standards and guidelines implemented throughout the healthcare industry. However, adverse drug events (ADEs) are still of serious concern, and continue to occur despite instituting interventions, including the eight rights of medication administration (Bonsall, 2011). Especially concerning are the ADEs at the endpoint of medication administration which is one of the most final and therefore dangerous actions performed. In ICU/CCU nurses work with one of the most vulnerable patient populations at risk for serious harm from medication errors. Bar code scanning for medication administration (BCMA) provides a viable solution to preventing errors. The BCMA has had a strong, positive reception, and hospitals have seen a significant reduction in medication errors. However, barriers to workflow with the BCMA have prompted nurses to develop workarounds, undermining the purpose of the technology to prevent medication errors. Purpose: The goal of this pilot study is to develop a survey tool that specifically focuses on the causes of the workarounds by nurses. Information obtained from the survey will highlight areas that may require redesign of the BCMA. Securing an effective BCMA system will produce higher compliance increasing patient safety.