ECRI Blog

RECALL: Palindrome and Mahurkar Hemodialysis Catheters and How to Find Alternative Products

Recently, Covidien, LLC, a subsidiary of Medtronic, recalled Palindrome and Mahurkar hemodialysis catheters due to a catheter hub defect. Once again, we are reminded that patient safety and supply chain are not separate parts of healthcare that should function independently of each other. Rather, their interdependence is vital to increasing patient safety and optimizing clinical outcomes; creating efficient, safe, and successful working environments; and maintaining the fiscal viability of healthcare facilities, be they large or small, private or public.

The COVID-19 pandemic brought this simmering issue to the surface, and healthcare provider organizations are getting smarter about preparing for the unexpected and strengthening their supply chains. ECRI has long offered such advice and support, and we continue to expand and strengthen our guidance, specifically in the area of providing trustworthy, independent functional equivalent information and  vendor information that is available quickly, easily, and cost-effectively—most importantly, it’s reliable information.

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Topics: Supply Chain

ECRI Experts Support Healthcare Supply Chain Professionals at the Upcoming AHRMM Conference

In today’s challenging healthcare market, it’s important to take opportunities to learn all you can to advance patient care, outcomes, and financial stability in your organization.

ECRI is proud to be an in-person exhibitor (booth 421) at the Association for Health Care Resource & Materials Management (AHRMM) conference August 7 to 10 in Anaheim, CA. to support healthcare supply chain professionals.

ECRI’s own Reggie Jackson will be a featured speaker on the topic: How Inconclusive Clinical Evidence Creates Opportunity For Physician Engagement.

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Topics: Supply Chain

3 Ways ECRI’s New Functional Equivalents Report Will Help YOU Master Supply Chain Disruptions

The supply chain issues of the last couple years show little signs of improving. Production slowdowns or stoppages, worker shortages, escalating costs, transportation issues, war, weather and other difficulties will continue. But what is improving is the ability of those in the healthcare sector to better plan for expected and unexpected challenges.

Buzz words such as cross functional integration in supply chain management and equipment equivalency guidelines or functional equivalence examples, are now part of the vernacular. And that’s a good thing; it means we’ve learned from the challenging experiences of the pandemic, and we are now better prepared to continue to navigate COVID-19, Monkey-pox, natural disasters, or whatever other hardships come our way.

A key trait shared by the healthcare facilities that have best learned how to navigate today’s supply chain is a willingness to do things differently, to partner with supply chain leaders, such as ECRI, or with “sister facilities” and even competitors. These partnerships have led to greater knowledge, insights, resource sharing, and support than ever before. And, organizations are refining and formalizing guidance.

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Topics: Supply Chain

Preventing Harm Requires Supply Chain Resilience: Emergency Preparedness and Planning beyond Acute Care

The COVID-19 pandemic has focused attention on healthcare emergency preparedness and response demonstrating real-time, the correlation between emergency preparedness and the safety and quality of care and services. But emergency preparedness did not begin with the pandemic—nor do the lessons stop there. The pandemic provided sobering evidence that these correlations exist beyond acute care, as demonstrated in other settings such as ambulatory and especially aging care.

Other highly-disruptive forces have increased the urgency for more robust emergency planning and response across the all care settings. An increasing frequency of threats from potentially life-threatening emergencies such as hurricanes, tornados, wildfires, severe flooding, and even cyberattacks now need consideration in every provider organization’s emergency preparedness and response efforts.

Any of these emergencies and related hazards require organizations to move from routine to non-routine operating environments. The ensuing disruption of continuity of care and services leads to a myriad of risks and opportunities for harm.

A critical area of operations which is often overlooked until an emergency occurs is purchasing and supply chain management—and when an emergency occurs it’s too late to effectively respond. Not having the right types and amounts of medications, supplies, and equipment available when needed creates real harm for not only persons served, but also the workforce who shoulders the burden of delivering the care and services throughout an emergency. Additionally, these risks extend enterprisewide, opening up an organization to real financial and reputational harm.

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Topics: Aging and ASC

What is Near-Miss Reporting? And How Can it Save Lives?

The ECRI and ISMP Patient Safety Organization has reached a milestone: more than 5 million events reported since its inception. However, two thirds of the reports were about actual events that reached the patient. Only 15% were labeled as “near miss” events, incidences that were "close calls." This is despite the well-known fact that near miss events are 10 to 100 times more common than actual events. Why is that?

Patient safety experts have long emphasized the necessity of creating a culture in which healthcare providers can freely report errors or other potentially avoidable events. This information can be protected by submitting the report, and all the investigations associated with it, to a patient safety organization (PSO). An exception exists only for events that must be reported to the state or an accreditation agency, but even there, any investigations and deliberations are protected when reported to a PSO under the Patient Safety and Quality Improvement Act of 2005.

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Topics: Patient Safety

ECRI Helps You Manage GE Healthcare Omnipaque Contrast Dye Shortages

Posted by Edward Nuber, Director of Marketing, ECRI on May 24, 2022

As with personal protective equipment (PPE), infant formula, and toilet paper, the COVID-19 pandemic continues to cause supply chain disruptions—this time causing an Omnipaque shortage. The contrast dye shortage has resulted in reduction and/or delays of the availability of Omnipaque (Iohexol) and Visipague (Idixonal).

These contrast dyes are needed for some imaging tests, including computed tomography (CT scans), which are often used to help diagnose tumors, investigate internal bleeding, or check for other internal injuries or damage and computed tomography angiography (CTA scans), often used in emergency cases, including diagnosis of strokes, aneurysms, and for cardiovascular procedures. During imaging tests, the dyes create contrast in body parts and fluids, making it easier to read scans and diagnose illness and conditions.

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Topics: Supply Chain

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: Supply Chain

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: 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's Health Technology Excellence Award: Recognizing Exceptional Health Technology Management

Posted by Edward Nuber, Director of Marketing, ECRI on Apr 26, 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 iinnovation 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: Patient Safety

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