Every industry strives to enhance their efficiency and quality of service by reducing human error and increasing worker productivity.
And, the healthcare industry is not lagging behind. Human errors are prevalent across all industrial sectors, but, when it comes to healthcare, a small mistake can be fatal – to patients, as well as medical professionals. The healthcare industry has undergone a number of changes in the past few decades. From electronic consultation to maintaining digital records, the industry has evolved drastically. Healthcare professionals have embraced innovative and useful technologies to improve internal processes, the administration of medical procedures, and also to enhance the quality of care provided to patients.
While this holds true, the system is still not free of concerns. The Canadian healthcare system is surrounded by various challenges and issues. One of the major issues that commonly concerns healthcare professionals is patient safety. Being admitted to a hospital is synonymous with tests and medication. For severe health conditions, which typically require long-term care and supervision, treatments may also involve organ or blood transfusion and continuous administration of medicines. Although doctors, nurses, as well as the staff, are striving to improve patient safety, even a veteran practitioner is prone to making human errors. This could threaten the patient’s life as well as the industry as a whole.
Well aware of this challenge, the healthcare industry is constantly working toward improving patient safety. Among all the technologies being implemented, one unsung hero is helping the industry enhance the care and safety offered to their patients, and that hero is barcode technology.
Let’s look at how barcode systems help streamline processes and improve patient safety.
Overcoming Patient Safety Challenges With Barcodes
Human errors are unpredictable, and preventing avoidable problems that result in the breach of patient safety can help alleviate this concern. The root cause of the issue of patient safety is the lack of streamlined processes for patient identification and tracking. Improving patient safety starts with patient identification, which in turn improves operational efficiency.
This is where barcode technology comes into play. From patient admittance and tracking medicine to recording patient’s health status and identifying these individuals, barcode solutions — like healthcare mobile printers, healthcare desktop printers and handheld barcode scanners — help streamline these processes.
Patient wristbands are created using on-site printers and are provided at the point of admission. This gives each patient a unique identification number. Barcode labels are also applied to medical records, medications, and specimen samples. Depending on the procedure they undergo, patient information is continually updated using modern scanning devices like the ones from Zebra. This helps minimize medication administration and patient identification errors drastically. For instance, when a patient is admitted and a specific medicine is provided, the professional only needs to scan the patient’s wristband and the label on the medication, and it will be instantly recorded in the patient’s medical records.
Today, where more and more healthcare practices are going electronic, using barcode solutions helps to eliminate manual data collection and its various loopholes. It also reduces delays in recording data, and errors in tracking the medication given and procedures implemented. Barcode technology solutions are reducing human errors to a large extent.
How Barcode Technology Is Benefiting Healthcare Practices By Improving Patient Safety
Barcode solutions in healthcare bring various benefits in terms of alleviating the causes of deteriorated quality of care and safety.
Improved Health Monitoring Practices
The treatment and medicines recommended to patients are highly dependent on their health condition and current prescriptions. With the help of patient tracking systems, any medicine being administered along with the patient’s health history is much easier to record and check up on. By eliminating manual recording processes, delays are avoided and so are potential mistakes in the records. Doctors and nurses can use this technology to provide reliable care to their patients, as they are less likely to prescribe medication that will interact or make a patient sick.
Eliminates Errors In Medication Administration
As mentioned before, barcode labels are frequently applied to medicine and samples. Nurses and doctors can use desktop printers like Zebra’s HC100 to create a wristband for the patient on-site. When the patient is given medicine, all that the healthcare professional needs to do is scan the wristband and the barcode on the medication, and it instantly is recorded. In the traditional manual recording processes, delays and lost data were a common issue. With mobile barcode technology like handheld barcode scanners and printers, the issues in the traditional system are eliminated. Processes are systemized, efficiency improves, and so does the quality of care provided to the patients.
Seamless Adoption And Easy To Use
One of the biggest benefits of these systems is the seamlessness with which it fits in the processes and its ease of use. When implementing new processes, healthcare professionals are always more focused on keeping their patients healthy, and this can cause them to delay learning how to use new technology. However, new barcoding systems are easier than ever to implement and require very little training time from the healthcare professionals. The devices are easy to learn and use, and are small, durable, and portable. The process of changing the cartridge is also quick and simple.
If you are interested in implementing barcode tracking solutions in your industry, then get in touch with us at Jet Marking Systems.