Is interoperability to blame for medical errors?

Taken from an article written by Erin McAnn- Managing Editor for Healthcare IT News, according to new data published by the non-partisan Gary and Mary West Health Institute, which sought input from nurses nationwide, the answer is an astounding “yes”.

“Some 60 percent of registered nurses said medical errors could significantly decrease if hospital medical devices were coordinated and interoperable. Even more marked was that half of them said they actually witnessed a medical mistake due to the lack of interoperability of these devices, which include infusion pumps, electronic medical records and pulse oximeters.”

Other key survey findings:

      *74 percent of these nurses agreed that it is burdensome to coordinate the data collected by medical devices.
      *93 percent agreed that medical devices should be able to seamlessly share data with one another automatically.

In a time when deaths by medical mistakes hits records, and studies are showing staggering cost savings with interoperability, this is not only mind-boggling but unacceptable. West Health Institute officials estimate that a connected, fully interoperable health system could save a potential $30 billion each year by reducing transcription errors, manual data entry and redundant tests.

How many more people need to die due to preventable medical mistakes, before we as a Nation but more importantly, we as patients, start putting the pressure on the big Medical Corporations, EHR’s etc to start playing well with others. It literally is a matter of life or preventable death.