In the latest Healthcare Informatics, April 2009, the editors gave out a series of “Innovator Awards” for 2009 to various healthcare systems and hospitals that have shown the most CIO leadership, vision and strategy. Congratulations to Detroit Medical Center for implementing an amazingly powerful IT system involving barcodes.
Detroit Medical implemented their barcode scanning system in a very intelligent fashion that addressed multiple issues we’ve posted, and even complained about, in this blog. First, they use a 2D barcode. More information, easier to scan. Second, they use wireless 2D scanners. Third, they color-code to differentiate between adults and neonates, thus eliminating the horrendously easy to mistake dosage differences.
A collaboration of clinicians, physicians and IT and they revolutionized patient safety in their medical center. May their accomplishment serve as a sentinel to how it should be done. Barcodes, contrary to the urban myth, do not cause workflow disasters; people who are unwilling or unable to recognize badly implemented barcode systems do