PLYMOUTH MEETING, PA—With just eight months left to meet the January 1, 2016, deadline for the Joint Commission’s National Patient Safety Goal on Clinical Alarms, hospital systems large and small continue to struggle with the requirements, which include establishing organization-wide policies and procedures, and educating staff.

The new Alarm Readiness Validation service from ECRI Institute, an independent nonprofit that is widely considered one of the nation’s leading experts on alarm safety, evaluates the progress hospitals have made to meet the requirements—and helps them see where they’re lagging. Led by ECRI Institute’s alarm safety experts, the on-site evaluation consists of the following elements:

  • Interviews with key administrative and clinical staff (i.e. Chief Nursing Officer, Chief Medical Officer), and directors or managers of departments such as critical care, cardiac telemetry, and nursing
  • Assessment of leaderships’ success at making alarm safety a top priority
  • Review of progress towards establishing alarm policies and procedures, and educating staff

Following the on-site review, ECRI Institute will summarize the findings and offer unbiased recommendations for next steps.

“Our new service aims to help hospital administrators improve patient safety and meet the Joint Commission’s requirements,” says Rob Maliff, director, applied solutions, ECRI Institute. “Hospitals should be getting nervous, because eight months is barely enough time to meet these requirements, especially if they have yet to address the gaps in their alarm practices.”

For many years, ECRI Institute has studied patient safety risks from alarm fatigue and other alarm-related hazards. With decades of hands-on experience in alarm testing and evaluation, alarm-related accident investigation, and interventions for process improvement, ECRI Institute has widely disseminated guidance on alarm safety. Many authorities cite ECRI Institute's recommendations, and the nation’s leading healthcare organizations have turned to its alarm safety experts for customized assistance.

Alarm hazards takes the No. 1 spot on ECRI Institute’s 2015 Top 10 Health Technology Hazards list and recently released 2015 Top 10 Patient Safety Concerns for Healthcare Organizations. Alarm middleware is featured on its 2015 Top 10 Hospital C-Suite Watch List.

For more information, please contact Rob Maliff by phone at (610) 825-6000, ext. 5130; by e-mail at; by fax at (610) 834-1275; or by mail at 5200 Butler Pike, Plymouth Meeting, PA 19462. ECRI’s European office can be contacted at; ECRI’s Malaysian office can be contacted at; and ECRI’s Middle Eastern office can be contacted at ECRI also offers free resources in our online eNewsletters.


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About ECRI Institute
ECRI Institute (, a nonprofit organization, dedicates itself to bringing the discipline of applied scientific research to healthcare to discover which medical procedures, devices, drugs, and processes are best to 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 ( and on Twitter (

For press inquiries, contact:
Laurie Menyo, Director of Public Relations
(610) 825-6000, ext. 5310