National Data Repository launched to track hospital medication errors

In a bid to enhance hospital care and improve patient safety the National Data Repository was launched in Bengaluru. The initiative taken up by The Infusion Nurses Society (INS), India Chapter, an independent coalition of academic healthcare professionals, along with Becton, Dickinson and Company will help gauge the extent of inadvertent medical errors and infections taking place in city hospitals.

Without making hospital names public, the initiative will use data to help ascertain the magnitude of the problem and suggest a way forward. The data will be pooled and published as national benchmarks and utilized for development of evidence based protocols and actions for improvement.

According to Col Binu Sharma, President INS India, “Of all hospital acquired infection cases, a significant percentage can be attributed to unsafe infusion practices involving crucial life-saving IV administration of fluids, parenteral nutrition, drugs and blood products. The INS national repository will help ascertain the magnitude of medication errors, treatment related complications and healthcare associated infections which are missing as of today.”

9 out of 10 patients admitted in hospitals receive infusion therapy during the course of their stay for therapeutic or diagnostic purposes. Improper infusion practices lead to complications, causing an increase in mortality, morbidity, duration of hospital stay and healthcare costs. Mary Jose, Director, Nursing, Apollo Hospitals, Bengaluru says: “Breaches in infusion and medication handling practices can result in transmission of blood borne infections to patients. Data collection from hospitals is therefore vital to estimate the burden, to take necessary corrective and preventive actions and also to understand how health care facilities are faring when it comes to providing high quality in-patient care.”

According to WHO, one out of every 10 patients is harmed while receiving hospital care. At any given time, 1.4 million people worldwide suffer from infections acquired in hospitals. A number of disease outbreaks involving transmission of blood-borne pathogens due to unsafe infusion practices are reported globally. The US having world class health infrastructure still reports thousands of medication error cases.

Becton, Dickinson and Company, one of the global medical device companies in the world has already started working with several hospitals across India to coordinate adoption of INS Standards, surveillance of infusion related complications, quality training for nurses and healthcare professionals safe infusion practices. Varun Khanna, Managing Director, Becton, Dickinson and Company, India said, “Many infusion therapy complications are preventable if hospitals upgrade to new quality tools and adopt best medical practices. We are working to make Indian nurses and related healthcare professionals better aware and trained to protect patients from medication errors as well as associated infections by following safe infusion practices that are the standard worldwide.”

(Source: Press release)

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