Patient-Controlled Analgesia Needs Safety Improvements

The recently released Consumer Reports' Hospital Ratings suggests a need to reduce hospital-caused patient harm, as only 158 out of 1,000 hospitals scored above 60 percent for safety, according to Med City News.

Intravenous patient-controlled analgesiaIntravenous patient-controlled analgesia has produced a host of adverse effects with errors occurring every 407 people per 10,000 treated. However, this method is also considered crucial to inpatient care. PCA allow patients to control their pain medications, which is linked to improved satisfaction and recovery.

While some problems can be linked to the opioids themselves, many issues occur because of human error, including pump programming errors and incorrect dosages.

Advocacy groups are attempting to raise awareness about IV PCA risks and are encouraging healthcare professionals to help eliminate harmful side effects.

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