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Hospital clinicians are all too familiar with the distracting and stress-inducing issue of excessive alarms.

A study published in the BMJ, found that too many non-urgent alarms from medical devices can endanger patient care by desensitising clinicians and leading to ‘alarm-fatigue’.

This problem was experienced at the University Children’s Hospital of Basel (UKBB) in Switzerland, where they were using standalone monitors connected to phone, which did not make it clear whether they were flagging an emergency or a trivial issue.

 “We had 4,000 alarms on the phone a day during one shift and it really was driving everyone nuts, explains Caroline Stade, UKBB chief nursing officer (CNO). “This could have been a serious issue or could have been just playing with a sensor or changing a diaper, so we never knew what really was happening.”

Conventional pulse oximetry can display false low or high SpO2 and pulse rates–resulting in false alarms as high as 90% in intensive care units (ICUs) and recovery rooms.

Masimo Signal Extraction Technology (SET) pulse oximetry employs advanced signal processing techniques to allow accurate monitoring of arterial oxygen saturation and pulse rate. 

After implementing Masimo SET pulse oximetry and connected monitoring solutions, UKBB experienced fewer false alarms.

“The nurses could rely on the monitor, kan man sniffa viagra ” said Stade. “They had a central station and they knew all the children were safe. Patient safety is the goal.”

With fewer false alarms, clinicians can intervene earlier and focus on the patients who need the most attention, improving patient safety.

“Masimo provided us with Masimo SET technology that allows you to continuously monitor patient data. In addition, we decided to put in place the Patient SafetyNet, a remote monitoring and clinician notification system. That is a central view system that allows you to continuously monitor your patients remotely, even on your mobile devices wherever you are in the hospital.”

The Patient SafetyNet remote  monitoring system displays near real-time information from any connected Masimo or third-party device at a central station, allowing alarms and alerts from bedside devices to be sent directly to clinicians.

“Overall this improves the effectiveness of your work. This results in a reduction of stress for the entire team and also for the patients and their parents,” concludes Erb. 

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