With the BD.id System, BD focuses on improving the hospital's operations prior to implementing technology, in order to increase patient safety while positively impacting a hospital's bottom line costs. The BD.id System is designed to enhance safety and streamline the specimen collection process by reducing the potential for errors when hospital staff members collect blood, urine or other specimens from patients. Proper specimen management involves taking the right specimens from the right patients at the right time. It is critical that laboratory specimens be collected into the correct container and labeled in the presence of the patient in order to prevent specimens from being mislabeled. Finally, test results need to be linked back to the right patients.
"Collecting specimens from patients in a hospital is a very complex process, involving multiple steps and many people. Not surprisingly, there are several touch points where errors can occur," says Ana Stankovic, MD, PhD, MSPH, of WW Medical, BD Diagnostics - Preanalytical Systems. "Hospitals that have implemented the BD.id System have significantly reduced the incidence of errors and dramatically improved the accuracy of specimen collecting, testing and reporting."
According to Jamie Boone, BS, MT (ASCP), assistant director of laboratory services at Jackson General, the hospital's pre-implementation analysis of the BD.id System indicated it would be able to reduce errors in the specimen collection process, avoid time-consuming blood redraws and lower the cost of delivering medical care. The pre-implementation analysis predicted that the BD.id System could save the hospital as much as $285,000 over five years.
Boone also plans to make use of the BD.id System's wireless capabilities (now available with the new BD.id System version 6.1), which allow hospital staff to download specimen orders immediately and to transfer collection status information into the laboratory information system at any time.
The first step in implementing the BD.id System actually begins before the system is even used by hospital staff. Prior to installation, BD consultants apply methodologies such as Failure Mode and Effects Analysis (FMEA), Lean Management and Six Sigma to help hospitals analyze their current specimen collection processes. The consultants recommend changes designed to streamline operations, increase staff efficiency, improve quality and patient safety and reduce errors and the costs associated with them.
During this evaluation, BD consultants analyze everything from the layout of blood collection supplies in trays to the setup of the specimen receipt area. They also conduct time-and-motion studies to eliminate unnecessary walking and movement that waste valuable staff time. Finally, using a hospital's own data, BD consultants perform return-on-investment analyses to determine the potential financial benefit a hospital could derive from the BD.id System.
For Jackson-Madison Hospital, this pre-implementation analysis was particularly valuable. "Since we had already applied Lean Management principles to our processes, selecting the BD.id System was the next logical step," Boone says. "We learned that we had a lot of wasted time and non-value added steps in our process and we were not standardized in how each phlebotomist approached the collection process. We were surprised at how many times specimen labels were handled and resorted."
Once installed, the BD.id System further safeguards the specimen collection and management process by pairing sophisticated software with bedside bar-coding technology. When a specimen collection order is entered into the hospital's laboratory information system, it is downloaded to the BD.id server and transmitted to a handheld computer terminal that contains a bar-code scanner. A healthcare professional scans his or her identification badge first and then scans the patient's bar-coded wristband to verify the patient's identity. The handheld prints a specimen label at the bedside. The label lists the healthcare professional who collected the sample, as well as the patient, the date and time of the collection, the container type and the test ordered.
"We see the BD.id System for Specimen Management as a perfect fit for our hospital," Boone says. "It will allow us to identify patients, reduce the time wasted in continuous handling of labels and reduce the errors associated with collecting in the wrong tube."
Jackson-Madison County General Hospital, a non-profit 662-bed tertiary care center, is the flagship facility of West Tennessee Healthcare. Located between Memphis and Nashville, Jackson General serves a 17-county area of rural West Tennessee. Founded in 1950, the hospital now boasts five 'centers of excellence' and has become one of Tennessee's most respected healthcare sites.
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