ECRI Blog

Abbott Infant Formula Shortage: 3 ECRI Recommendations

Posted by Edward Nuber, Director of Marketing, ECRI on May 18, 2022

Infant formula shortage is all over the news. The White House is taking emergency actions, while mothers, fathers and families are feeling the brunt of the shortage.  

On February 17, 2022, Abbott initiated a proactive, voluntary recall of powder formulas, including Similac, Alimentum and EleCare manufactured in Sturgis, Michigan, because of possible Cronobacter sakazakii or Salmonella Newport contamination.

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Topics: Risk Management, Patient Safety, ECRI, Public Health, Baby Formula Recall, Abbott Infant Formula Shortage, Formula Manufacturers

We See You: ECRI Recognizes Exceptional Health Technology Management

Posted by Edward Nuber, Director of Marketing, ECRI on May 10, 2022

A popular folk musician once said, “You just get the vibe of your surroundings, and it rubs off on you.” Indeed, surroundings are very important; and when a pleasing aesthetic melds with functionality “the vibe” gets even better, and so does effectiveness. Such innovation helps drive success, and in healthcare, it even helps improve the patient experience, cost management, staff satisfaction, and outcomes.

This year, the winner of ECRI’s annual Health Technology Excellence Award (formerly known as the Health Devices Achievement Award) has demonstrated a high commitment to innovation resulting in improvements that will advance both patient care and comfort. ECRI proudly named McLaren Northern Michigan the winner for the member facility’s exceptional initiative to improve patient safety, reduce costs, or otherwise facilitate better strategic management of health technology.

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Topics: Industry Trends, Technology Assessment, Value-Based Care Outcomes, ECRI, Leadership, Public Health

5 Traits to Help Your Team Become a High Reliability Organization

Achieving the status “High Reliability Organization (HRO)” is now the gold standard for healthcare organizations, but there is little agreement on how to achieve it. To help you move your organization toward this important goal, let’s try to make that term clearer. Authors Weick and Sutcliffe first used the phrase in their 2001 book, Managing the Unexpected, now in its 3rd revision (Weick, K. E., & Sutcliffe, K. M., 2015 Managing the unexpected, John Wiley & Sons).

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Topics: Patient Safety, ECRI, Best-practice evidence-based medicine, Leadership, Public Health, Medical errors, Patient Safety Organizations, continuous improvement, High Reliability Organization

New ECRI and the ISMP Global Headquarters Enhances Patient Safety Work

Posted by Edward Nuber, Director of Marketing, ECRI on Apr 26, 2022

The recent ribbon-cutting ceremony at ECRI and the ISMP’s new headquarters highlighted a period of growth for ECRI as we introduced the world to our new building. The facility is designed to enhance our capabilities, support employees, and empower us to continue our 50-plus year journey of creating a safer, more effective, and more transparent healthcare industry—with patient safety always serving as our guiding light.

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Topics: ECRI, Leadership, Public Health, Patient Safety Organizations

Why You Need a Patient Safety Organization (PSO)

Healthcare workers want to keep patients safe and provide high quality care. Unfortunately, despite best intentions, erroneous, substandard, and unequal care are still too common, harming 1 in 10 hospitalized patients in the US. Today’s evidence-based Patient Safety Organizations (PSOs) are working toward zero-avoidable-harm healthcare. Choosing the right PSO can help your organization reach this goal.

The World Health Organization defines Patient Safety as: “A framework of organized activities that creates cultures, processes, procedures, behaviors, technologies and environments in health care that consistently and sustainably lower risks, reduce the occurrence of avoidable harm, make errors less likely and reduce the impact of harm when it does occur.”

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Topics: Patient Safety, ECRI, Evidence-based decision making, Best-practice evidence-based medicine, Leadership, Public Health, PSO, Medical errors, Patient Safety Organizations, continuous improvement

Healthcare Heroes Need Help Too: Mental Health Issues Grow with Pandemic Stresses

ECRI this year, named healthcare worker mental health as its second of ten patient safety concerns for 2022.

For years, the healthcare community has known that the stresses of the profession can take a toll on those in direct care roles. Healthcare is hard work, physically and emotionally. Challenges such as staffing shortages, patient load, workplace violence, liaising with other caregivers, patients, and families, and even lack of basic bathroom and meal breaks, can contribute to exhaustion, depression, anxiety, self-doubt, frustration, hopelessness, and fear.

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Topics: Patient Safety, COVID-19, ECRI, Leadership, Pandemic Leadership, Thought Leadership, Public Health, Nursing shortage, Healthcare worker burnout, Mental Health, Burnout, physician suicide

The “Great Resignation” Hits Healthcare Where it already Hurts: Staffing Shortages

Across industries, the topic of worker shortages has dominated conversations because the COVID-19 pandemic contributed to the “great resignation.” And healthcare is no exception. But in healthcare, the stakes are greater than other industries because patient safety directly correlates to adequate staffing. Issues such as quality of care, medication errors, patient satisfaction, higher patient mortality, overcrowding, and more all can be linked to adequate staffing. With patient safety in mind, ECRI’s Top 10 Patient Safety list names staffing shortages as the number one challenge of the year.

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Topics: Risk Management, Patient Safety, COVID-19, Clinical Excellence, ECRI, Leadership, Pandemic Leadership, Thought Leadership, Public Health, Nursing shortage

Five Ways Value Analysis and Supply Chain Leaders Can Improve Transparency

Today’s value analysis leaders face tall orders. They need to focus on process improvements, utilize and embrace digital advancements, and provide greater transparency and visibility during new product evaluation and product standardization requests. Having access to the right combination of tools and information can empower them to accomplish these objectives as they work to balance cost, quality, and outcome goals.

Many of ECRI’s value analysis members confirm the need to support and drive greater transparency in their own value analysis programs. Adding greater visibility can make others feel connected and more actively involved and responsible during the decision-making process. It also provides an opportunity to shape a more integrated clinical support system–one that helps drive evidence-based decisions on new products, technology, and capital projects. Finally, greater visibility can break down silos and alleviate communication barriers, most often common when working across multiple, diverse departments.

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Topics: Supply Chain, Technology Assessment, Value-Based Care Outcomes, ECRI, Evidence-based decision making, Informed Decision-making, Clinically Integrated Supply Chain, Value Analysis Management, Value Analysis, Unbiased Clinical Evidence, Decision-Making Support, Tansparency, Transparent Value Analysis Management

ECRI's Top 10 Patient Safety Risks for 2022

Posted by Edward Nuber, Director of Marketing, ECRI on Mar 18, 2022

An important part of maintaining patient safety is establishing the shared belief that despite the high-risk environment in healthcare, patient safety is possible, and it’s everyone’s responsibility. Creating awareness of common problems and opening a dialogue about prevention, learning, and solutions can help.

To that end, ECRI annually publishes a list of its top 10 patient safety concerns, and we are pleased to share the 2022 list with you here. ECRI analyzed a wide scope of data, including scientific literature, patient safety events or concerns reported to or investigated by ECRI, client research requests and queries, and other internal and external data sources.

Like it has done to almost everything else in the world, the COVID-19 pandemic has shaped this year’s list. The annual list is usually topped by clinical issues caused by device malfunctions or medical errors. But this year, staffing shortages and healthcare workers’ mental health top a list of patient safety concerns released by ECRI. Inadequate staffing is jeopardizing patient safety. Due to staffing shortages, many patients are waiting longer for care, even in life-threatening emergencies, or simply being turned away.

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Topics: Risk Management, Patient Safety, Supporting Physicians, ECRI, Healthcare inequity, Leadership, Thought Leadership, Public Health, Nursing Burnout, Healthcare Staff Shortages

Use a Predictive Replacement Plan to Create a Better Capital Replacement Process—and Include these 6 Questions

We all know the adage, the squeaky wheel gets the oil. It can even apply to your hospital’s capital budget planning exercise.

Capital requests include both replacement items for existing equipment and new or additional purchases, and the process tends to move quickly. Unfortunately, the loudest voices usually get the bulk of the available capital dollars, and smaller departments often are left out.

A Predictive Replacement Plan, or PRP, can streamline this process and provide objective recommendations regarding the replacement of capital equipment in a systemic manner.

A PRP is a deep dive into the capital medical inventory of a health care institution which is then used to develop and coordinate an unbiased 5 or 10-year replacement schedule, based on multiple objective factors, including organizational goals and patient needs. It is not based solely on the age of the equipment or the subjective desire or influence of a department director or physician. A PRP is based on multiple objective factors including device recall data, OEM support, part availability from OEM and aftermarket sources, changing technologies, device utilization, and clinical needs of the clinician.

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Topics: Health Devices, Supply Chain, Equipment Planning, Technology Assessment, ECRI, Evidence-based decision making, Leadership, Vaccines, Inventory, predictive replacement planning, Thought Leadership

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