Carefully Placed Barriers Can Reduce Interruptions at Centralized Medication Stations

November 14, 2012 | Strategic Insights for Health System


Installing barriers in two places around a centralized medication station significantly reduced interruptions during medication administration while maintaining the benefits of its open design, concludes a study published in the November 2012 issue of BMJ Quality and Safety. The study, which took place on an acute pediatric ward in an academic referral children’s hospital, found that installation of the barriers reduced the mean rate of interruptions from 1.4 per minute to 0.27 per minute. An analysis of the workflow at the station revealed several subtasks in the provision of safe medication administration that were more susceptible to interruption.

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