Public Release: 

Bridge Medical white paper examines evidence of barcoding success in medical error prevention

Bridge Medical, Inc.

SOLANA BEACH, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Oct. 17, 2002--A new study reports 40 potentially harmful drug errors a day, on average, in the 36 hospitals and nursing homes examined. Today, Bridge Medical -- a company that has been honored for its patient safety technology and educational initiatives -- released a new white paper that offers promise of an affordable, easy-to-affect remedy for these and other medical errors.

The white paper reviews evidence of "The Effect of Barcode-enabled Point of Care Technology on Patient Safety." Barcode technology has been shown to help prevent the most common errors Auburn University Professor Kenneth N. Barker, PhD, cited in a recent study. Published in the Archives of Internal Medicine, the study found that errors occurred in nearly one of five doses in a typical, 300-bed hospital (i.e., approx. two errors per patient daily). Seven percent of the errors were considered potentially harmful.

"As stakeholders in the quality improvement of this nation's healthcare, we must recognize the vulnerability of the patient in all of us," writes Institute for Safe Medication Practices President Michael R. Cohen, RPh, MS, DSc, FASHP, in the foreword.

"When a practice or technology exists that is proven to reduce error, it is our shared responsibility to communicate its efficacy. A technology has begun to take center stage demonstrating impressive results and demanding our attention. Barcode enabled point-of-care (BPOC) systems provide a safeguard against error at the most vulnerable stage in the medication use process -- during administration. Peer-reviewed studies validating BPOC technology efficacy, industry movement to establish a healthcare barcoding standard, and the announcement of a future FDA ruling mandating manufacturer-applied barcodes testify to BPOC systems' coming of age. Its effective use can save lives and dollars while increasing overall staff efficiency."

In addition to describing how BPOC systems can be used to prevent medication administration errors in the hospital setting, the Bridge literature review examines the efficacy of barcoding in preventing blood transfusion and laboratory specimen collection errors.

Case studies excerpted from peer-reviewed and other reports by researchers and hospital clinicians document BPOC technology successes at Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) hospitals, St. Marys Hospital Medical Center (Madison, Wis.), St. Luke's Episcopal Hospital (Houston, Tex.), North Colorado Medical Center (Greeley, Colo.), Georgetown University Hospital (Washington, D.C.) and the Valley Hospital (Ridgewood, N.J.).

"Designed for healthcare payors, providers, purchasers and regulators, the paper presents BPOC systems from both sides -- benefits and perceived barriers to effective use," explains Bridge CEO John B. Grotting, who co-authored the white paper with Bridge Director of Medical Informatics Michael Yang, MD, MS. Other co-authors include Director of Market Research Jamie Kelly, Senior Clinical Consultant Mary Michael Brown, RN, MS, and Executive Director, Clinical Services Barbara Trohimovich, RPh, BSPharm.

"The white paper is designed to give the healthcare industry important information they can use as they gear up to take advantage of a proposed FDA rule mandating barcodes on the packages of human drugs and biologic products," notes Cohen.

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About Bridge

Founded in 1996, Bridge Medical, Inc., is headquartered in Solana Beach, Calif. The company provides robust, affordable, easy-to-use technology-based patient safety solutions. For a free copy of the Bridge white paper, visit http://www.bridgemedical.com/pdf/whitepaper_barcode.pdf, or contact info@bridgemedical.com.

MedPoint is a trademark of Bridge Medical, Inc. The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.

CONTACT: Bridge Medical
Carol Somer, 858-314-5538 or
888-578-0100
703-593-5786 (cell)
csomer@bridgemedical.com

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