4 min read

The One Thing Pagers Do Really Well (And How To Carry That into The Future)

By Kinsie Clarkson on Mar 10, 2021

Pagers have been a staple in healthcare communication since the 1980s. Small, loud, and easily passed from clinician to clinician, pagers have been the constant companions of doctors and nurses for a long time. And in that time, they've been vital tools for communication. 

They have their drawbacks, but there are a few important reasons why pagers have stuck around for so long. One particular feature in the pager's design has ensured their longstanding usefulness for physicians: The loud, obnoxious alerts.

Why is that important? Pagers interrupt workflow. In a good way.

Topics: Communication Connected Teams Miscommunication Connectivity Pager
4 min read

Pagers Expose Months of Patient Data from Ambulance Tasmania

By Kinsie Clarkson on Feb 08, 2021

Last month, Ambulance Tasmania was rocked by the news that a major data breach exposed over two months of records of patients’ sensitive data.

On January 8th, the personal details of every patient who called an ambulance between November 2020 and mid-January 2021 were discovered online. The website’s administrator posted live updates every time paramedics were dispatched, until the webpage was shut down in mid-January. Sensitive health information exposed on the website included patients’ personal details, gender, age, condition, HIV status, and even the address of the incident. Tasmanian officials expressed concern, outrage, and vows to get to the bottom of the matter.

Where did the breach come from?

Pagers.

Topics: Technology Miscommunication Pager New Zealand
5 min read

Patient-Centric Emergency Medicine’s New Standard: Mobile Communication

By Kinsie Clarkson on Nov 16, 2020

Are you using old, non-patient-centric communication technologies like pagers or phone calls (or even WhatsApp) to solve present-day healthcare challenges? Do you ever wonder if there's a better way to connect your care teams? 

At the European Resuscitation Council Virtual Congress on Oct. 24, 2020, Greg Brown, RN, Pulsara's Western Regional Sales Manager, hosted an exclusive webinar exploring just that. In "Patient-Centric Emergency Medicine: Why Mobile Team Communication Across Healthcare Organizations is the New Standard," Greg discusses how to improve acute care team communication and patient outcomes by switching to mobile technology — and why it is imperative to inter-organizational success.

Topics: Communication Technology Time Sensitive Emergencies Connected Teams Miscommunication Systems of Care COVID-19 Inter-Organization Communication Telehealth
3 min read

Are Pagers Exposing Protected Health Information?

By Kinsie Clarkson on Aug 26, 2020

Canadian Privacy Researcher Discovers Pagers Broadcasting Sensitive Patient Information on Unencrypted Channels


Healthcare has long relied on pagers as the most secure, reliable way to communicate between clinicians. But new evidence suggests that this time-tested communication method may actually be causing HIPAA violations for unwitting hospitals.

Topics: Technology Miscommunication Telehealth Canada
3 min read

UK Hospitals to Replace Pagers by End of 2021

By Kinsie Clarkson on Aug 07, 2020

Outdated technology is one of the major factors lurking behind miscommunication in healthcare. Pagers, fax machines, and radios still dominate care spaces, and are the primary method for transmitting important information from person to person. In every other sphere of life, mobile technology has long since replaced these outdated forms of communication—except in healthcare, where every second matters to each patient’s outcome.

Now, the UK's National Health Service has decided to change that. 

Earlier this year, the NHS announced that they will require NHS trusts to replace pagers in UK hospitals by the end of 2021. “Every day, our wonderful NHS staff work incredibly hard in what can be challenging and high-pressured environments. The last thing they need are the frustrations of having to deal with outdated technology – they deserve the very best equipment to help them do their jobs,” said Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock.

Topics: Innovation Miscommunication Telehealth United Kingdom
6 min read

Can Your Hospital Relate to These Communication Frustrations?

By Hannah Ostrem on Dec 09, 2019

 

DOES THE FOLLOWING SOUND FAMILIAR TO YOU?

Your hospital team receives a radio report from the local EMS service.

"We are on our way with KCCFPPPTHHH patient."

"Sorry, what??"

"We are coming in with a STEMI patient. ETA KCCFPPPTHHH..."

Didn't catch that. Oh well. Time to notify the rest of the team. Your unit clerk starts the process of trying to contact each member of the cardiac team. This takes her so long that before she's heard back from even half of them...

Topics: Miscommunication Systems of Care
1 min read

Why is Healthcare Still Playing a Real Life Game of Telephone?

By James Laidlaw on Nov 15, 2019

Do you remember the Telephone Game you played as a kid? Everybody gets in a circle and the first person whispers a secret to the person sitting next to them, then that person repeats it to the next in line, and so on. At the conclusion, the last person states out loud what was said to her, and everybody laughs as they hear how much the phrase changed from beginning to end with every player hearing a slightly different message. The entire point of the game is miscommunication.

Topics: Connected Teams Medical Error Miscommunication
2 min read

Create Barriers Between Patients and Medical Errors

By Team Pulsara on Oct 02, 2019

Implementing a medication administration cross check helped St. Charles County Ambulance District reduce dosing errors and win recognition for its Just Culture.

EDITOR'S NOTE: This article originally appeared on EMS1.com and was authored by John Romeo, deputy chief medical officer, St. Charles County Ambulance District.

In April, the Center for Patient Safety awarded St. Charles County Ambulance District with the EMS Patient Safety First Award. The Center for Patient Safety cited SCCAD’s establishment of a Peer Review Committee, development of a safety plan involving all staff, and the adoption of a Just Culture as rationale for the selection. The group also lauded the implementation of the medication administration cross check as a measure to reduce dosing errors.

Topics: Patient Safety Medical Error Miscommunication