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Hospital invests $1.2 million to ensure patient safety

By By Chris Cole
Published On: May 02 2013 12:31:04 AM CDT

New IV smart pumps at Portneuf Medical Center

POCATELLO, Idaho -

Portneuf Medical Center has invested $1.2 million into some new devices for patients.

The most important way these will help patients is by reducing medical errors.

"It's safer for the patients,” said registered nurse Danielle Harris. “That's what we want."

Portneuf Medical Center's investment is for the sole purpose of increasing patient safety.

"In health care, it's unlikely that you're not going to have a mistake,” said Cory Briscoe, clinical lead in the ICU, “but this particular smart pump system has a guardrail system within it."

This smart pump system monitors the patient so closely, it can tell if your arm is bent and interfering with the IV.

"We've had IV pumps in the hospital for a long time,” Briscoe said, “but what makes this different is the ability to calibrate medications more effectively."

Two hundred individual systems, or "brains," tie into a wireless system in the pharmacy.

From the pharmacy, they are able to add new drugs while the individual machines remain in use.

"From a pharmacy perspective, if we add a new drug to the library that's in the pump,” stated Briscoe, “that update can all be done remotely."

The smart pumps can keep track of up to four different drips, if a patient is on multiple medications.

The system is also very user-friendly for staff, as well as for patients with a self-administer option.

"I think they can know that the safety that we are providing to them is much better,” said Harris. “It's easier to use and it's monitoring closer, hospital-wide."

The system also keeps track of all the patient's information, like weight.

If a nurse does make an error in entering a dosage, the system will alert the nurse of the correct amount based on that individual patient's information.

All the staff went through an extensive training to use the new pump system.

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