Hospitals are supposed to be environments for healing, and intensive care patients need to get as much rest as they can to heal. Along with their other duties that help patients heal, the clinical staff are supposed to monitor clinical alarms for changes in patient condition. Clinical alarms are meant to alert clinicians when one of the parameters being monitored has moved outside the range that was set as normal for the patient. However, when staff members are continuously exposed to these alarms, they become desensitized and may disable or silence alarms without checking the patient. Alarm fatigue has been defined by the ECRI Institute as a condition of sensory overload for staff members who are exposed to an excessive number of alarms. 1 Several incidents have been reported involving patients who have died in hospitals because the staff have not responded to the alarms that were meant to alert...
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Creating a Healthy Workplace| January 01 2014
The Effect of Alarm Fatigue on the Work Environment
Nancy Blake, RN, PhD, CCRN, NEA-BC
AACN Adv Crit Care (2014) 25 (1): 18–19.
Nancy Blake; The Effect of Alarm Fatigue on the Work Environment. AACN Adv Crit Care 1 January 2014; 25 (1): 18–19. doi: https://doi.org/10.4037/NCI.0000000000000009
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