Radiation overdose tops ECRI tech hazards list for 2011

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Radiation overdose and dose errors during radiation therapy are among the top hazards for 2011, according to a report released by ECRI Institute, a nonprofit that researches approaches to improving patient care. The list features the top 10 health technology hazards that warrant critical attention by hospitals and other healthcare organizations in the coming year.

The Top 10 Health Technology Hazards list is updated each year based upon the prevalence and severity of incidents reported to the Plymouth Meeting, Pa.-based ECRI Institute by healthcare facilities nationwide; information found in the Institute's medical device problem reporting databases and the judgment and analysis of the organization's staff.

The top hazards on ECRI Institute's 2011 list are:

  1. Radiation overdose and other dose errors during radiation therapy
  2. Alarm hazards
  3. Cross-contamination from flexible endoscopes
  4. The high radiation dose of CT scans
  5. Data loss, system incompatibilities, and other health IT complications
  6. Luer misconnections
  7. Oversedation during use of PCA infusion pumps
  8. Needlesticks and other sharp injuries
  9. Surgical fires
  10. Defibrillator failures in emergency resuscitation attempts

Healthcare professionals can obtain the complete 2011 list here.