Stabbing at Arizona hospital leads to lawsuit, questions about patient safety and security (ABC 15 – Arizona)

“Aaron Wallace was sleeping when he was attacked in his bed.

The patient at the Arizona State Hospital was stabbed by Reuben Murray, a fellow patient with a murderous past, who was wandering the halls unsupervised in the middle of the night with a sharpened pencil, according to a recent lawsuit filed against the state.”

The hospital security environment is extremely complex. Making hospitals safer requires great technology properly integrated with efficient security staff.

Biometrics For Patient Identification: Obstacles And Opportunities (Health IT Outcomes)

Daniel Cidon, Chief Technology Officer of NextGate, has a really well-sourced piece up at Health IT Outcomes. Using data from recent studies by ECRI, Gartner, and Pew, his perspective on healthcare ID management and biometrics is well worth a read.

A sample…

“Research at the ECRI Institute paints a grim picture of how deeply troubling and harmful patient identification errors can be. In examining 7,613 cases of wrong-patient errors at 181 organizations, incidents included an individual in cardiac arrest that was not resuscitated because the care team mistakenly obeyed the wrong patient’s do-not-resuscitate order and an infant given milk from the wrong mother who was infected with hepatitis.

ECRI found 13 percent of identification errors occurred at registration, when, for example, duplicate records were created, or two patients’ records were “overlaid,” a term that describes when information from one patient is used to replace another’s.

These issues are driving health IT executives to pursue use of biometrics technology at registration to add another layer of protection of patient identity integrity.”