The security of patients always remains a major concern for the healthcare industry. Considering the situation and use of technology, the industry is using patient ID wristband today. It is basically a band that consists of every relevant detail of the patient.
In this context, the approach of the healthcare sector is very clear to provide maximum safety and quality care to the patients with the least possibility of errors. The success of such patient ID wristbands is quite high. While approximately 85% of the patients having ID wristbands with correct information, 11.9% of wristbands were found in error and only 4.2% of the patients were without ID wristbands.
The patient ID wristband as an identification method has been proof for improved safety processes for over a decade now.
The process for patient identification involves cross-checking of records with the patients' ID wristband data, with the information provided by the patient. This stage is seen to be important as it includes the interaction of the patient with the associated medical team.
With the use of barcode wristband, it is easy to maintain an error-free record. This used to be a laborious and often inaccurate process before the implementation of the barcode band. Carelessness in information inputs can be harmful if the patient is not provided with the barcode wristband or if the patient's ID wristband does not contain accurate information for identification.
The healthcare industry has really worked hard with the merging of technology as regards the latest equipment, machines, or security systems (including patient's data protection). It has been over a decade now since there have been huge improvements in all the medical facilities and patient's security systems, not to mention the human errors that have posed continuous risks.
- According to the Joint Commission for Accreditation of Hospital Organizations (JCAHO), patient identification errors have led to 13% of surgical mistakes and 65% of transfusion mix-ups in the US.
- Not only this Health Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) has reported approx. 14% of the medical records to be inaccurate> This is dangerous data for medical treatment of the patient as it involves a life and death situation.
What Are Patients' ID Wristbands?
The ID wristbands contain barcodes on them as identification codes of patients. It is known as the patient's ID wristband and works as a potential scanner to read the information captured by the barcode.
Such patient ID wristbands are ideal for the healthcare industry which spans across hospitals, clinics, senior citizen shelters, rehabilitation centers, dispensaries etc.
It is important to identify the patients and ensure accurate tracking and providing correct medical treatment.
The patient ID wristband can hold the following information:
- Patient name
- An assigned medical record number (ID number)
- Patient's Date of Birth
- Contact details
- Social security number
- Medical history
- Details of all possible allergies
- Administered medication
- Medication dosage
- Assigned medical head and team
- Details of surgeries, etc.
How Efficient Are Patients ID Wristbands?
The use of patients' ID wristband has decreased the potential errors that can compromise patient safety. It has eliminated the possibility of medical errors, helping doctors and nurses to keep an accurate track of patients' treatment and health parameters.
The modern barcode bands are the result of science and technology that has delivered notable changes in contrast to the old low-quality bands or handwritten wristbands. Some of them are mentioned below:
- Accurate identification of patients
- Trustworthy environment for the patient and its family
- Accurate medical details for treatment and medication
- Real-time tracking of patients for their location and medical records
- There can also be a provision of a virtual voice when a direct conversation is not possible.
- Before the induction of these modern patient ID wristbands into the healthcare industry, the sector faced lots of failure in various aspects of safety and security, such as:
- Failure to correctly identify the patient
- Medication errors
- Transfusion errors
- Testing errors
- Wrong person procedures
- Even discharge of infants to wrong families
Benefits of Patient ID Wristband
All the defined security measures that taken for the patients and their medical records is highly confidential therefore, its solution should meet the standards of high security that shall not be breached.
The solution should provide access to minimum of the staff that would be accurate and reliable. Till now barcode wristbands are the most effective solution to cover and ensure the patients safety for its medical records, medication, or real-time tracking within the healthcare premises.
There are many benefits of implementing barcode patient ID wristbands, such as:
Barcode bands provide patients' data and information accurately lending reliability in identifying patients and their treatment, by simply scanning the barcode on wristbands. It is a much more efficient method of tracking than manual data recording.
The barcode scan saves a lot of time that earlier used to be spent on administrative tasks, finding history records etc. With just a scan, you are good to go with all the essential details of patients on the computer system or handheld devices.
Improved Patient Safety
Barcode wristbands provide instant access to patients' records with enhanced quality. This enables the staff to take decision on that point of time.
For example, if a patient is not in the room and fell or fainted somewhere in the hospital, the barcode on their wristband helps the medical practitioners to know the details of that patient (what medical condition they were in, what medication was being provided, what the dosage was, who the assigned doctor and team are etc.). This helps in putting the necessary precautions and practices in place for the welfare of patients.
There can also be a provision of virtual voice whenever a conversation is not possible.
Elimination of Human Error
Through the digital method of barcode patient ID wristbands, keeping records is quite easy without the risk of human errors due to manual inputs. It takes care of the classic concern of human reliability due to missing data, misinterpreted dosages, etc. that usually risked patients' lives.
The digital method of tracking and managing patient's data has cut down costs heavily.
Implementation of barcode wristbands has drastically improved the process of documentation and identification in healthcare establishments. The goal of going digital goes on to ensure maximum safety, quality patient care, and error-free medical records.
Clearing all practical hurdles, the barcode wristbands have efficiently passed all the important objectives such as patient safety, elimination of human errors, streamlined surgeries, correct medicine dosages etc.
By far, the patient ID wristband method is the best bet for hospital asset management for maintaining and managing patient security.
Barcodes provide accurate data for assets and inventory too. Asset management software is also implemented in hospitals to maintain and track the hospital's machines and equipment.