In the News
Using photos to reduce pediatric patient errors. At Children's Hospital Colorado, a team of physicians, nurses, hospital leadership, and others reviewed causes of errors and were surprised to see how many were related to orders being placed in the wrong patient's chart. Seeking to reduce the frequency of such errors, they made two changes to the electric charting system: the first was a verification screen that the provider must use to confirm that the patient name is correct; the second was the addition of an image of the patient's face on that page. These changes reduced the total number of reported patient identification errors by 25%; using either method resulted in a 75% decrease in ordering errors (and those that were made occurred at the bedside). Although the authors encourage others to incorporate patient photos in the medical records, they point out that the up-front and ongoing costs can be significant. The report appears in the July issue of Pediatrics.