BACKGROUND: Although dedicated monitor watchers are used in many progressive care units with telemetry monitors, this costly practice has not been evaluated. OBJECTIVE: To compare the accuracy of detection of clinically important dysrhythmias with and without a dedicated monitor watcher. METHODS: On a 26-bed cardiac progressive care unit, documentation of four categories of dysrhythmias during a 7-week period when a monitor watcher was present was compared with that during a 7-week period when no monitor watcher was present. The Hewlett-Packard CareVue Clinical Event Review, a full-disclosure system, was used as the gold standard. RESULTS: Accuracy of detection of nonsustained ventricular tachycardia, supraventricular tachycardia, and pauses was significantly better with a monitor watcher than without. Although the detection of life-threatening rhythms was correct a higher percentage of the time with a monitor watcher, the difference was not significant. CONCLUSIONS: The efficiency and quality of patient care can be enhanced by using a dedicated monitor watcher. The results of this study raise the question of whether improved accuracy of detection of dysrhythmias results in better outcomes for patients.
Accuracy of detection of clinically important dysrhythmias with and without a dedicated monitor watcher
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I Stukshis, M Funk, CR Johnson, JA Parkosewich; Accuracy of detection of clinically important dysrhythmias with and without a dedicated monitor watcher. Am J Crit Care 1 July 1997; 6 (4): 312–317. doi: https://doi.org/10.4037/ajcc19188.8.131.522
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