The beeping of monitors has become the audio wallpaper of hospital units, especially in intensive care units. Nurses even hear the beeping in their sleep, and for patients, the alarms can be terrifying. The vast majority of these alarms are unnecessary and do not require nursing intervention. Overexposure to these excessive alarms creates sensory overload and desensitization that can result in unintended consequences such as alarm fatigue. This problem is not new.

Alarm management can help battle alarm fatigue. There are a number of ways to diminish the constant beeping of alarms throughout your unit. Reviewing and adjusting alarm parameter settings is one approach to decrease alarms and address the effects of alarm fatigue. However, simple changes in patient care routines that don’t involve technology are often overlooked recommendations. Leigher and colleagues studied 2 specific nursing actions recommended in the American Association of...

You do not currently have access to this content.