Clinical Trial of an Educational Program to Decrease Monitor Alarms in a Medical Intensive Care Unit

    loading  Checking for direct PDF access through Ovid


Clinical research to identify effective interventions for decreasing nonactionable alarms has been limited. The objective of this study was to determine if a staff educational program on customizing alarm settings on bedside monitors decreased alarms in a medical intensive care unit (MICU). A preintervention, postintervention, nonequivalent group design was used to evaluate an educational program on alarm management in a convenience sample of MICU nurses. A 15-minute session was provided in a 1-week period. The outcome variable (number of alarms for low oxygen saturation via pulse oximetry [SpO2]) was determined from monitor log files adjusted by patient census. Data were collected for 15 days before and after the intervention. χ2 analysis was used, with P less than .05 considered significant. After 1 week of education, low SpO2 alarms decreased from 502 to 306 alarms per patient monitored per day, a 39% reduction (P < .001). Instructions for nurses in the medical intensive care unit on individualizing alarm settings to patients' clinical condition decreased common monitor alarms by 39%.

Related Topics

    loading  Loading Related Articles