Physician-Patient Alliance for Health & Safety is an advocacy group dedicated to improving patient health and safety. PPAHS seeks to advance key patient health and safety initiatives that significantly impact patient lives and to do so in a prescriptive and practical manner.
“Spot checks of SpO2, as are commonly taken on med/surg floors, need to be eliminated from patient monitoring practice because these single measurements may mislead a provider into thinking the patient is fine when in fact they may be close to the precipice of unrecoverable respiratory depression. Entering a patient room and placing a pulse oximeter on their finger stimulates their consciousness and respiration sufficiently to falsely elevate their reading, particularly when they are receive supplemental oxygen. Once the provider leaves the room, this stimulus fades and the patient may lapse back into a dangerous level of respiratory narcosis.”
“PCA errors certainly occur, both in programming and in delivery, but any published estimate is likely to be only the tip of the iceberg.”