Medical Oxygen Related Home Fire Safety and its Risks
Lee Ann Long
University of North Carolina at Charlotte NURS 6303 - 780
June 19, 2015
Introduction Oxygen can be a comforting, life sustaining treatment and a potent killer. As one of three components of the fire triangle (heat, fuel, and oxygen), it has the potential to cause great injury and even death in those who ignore the risks and fail to follow safety guidelines. The Joint Commission has identified the risk of medical oxygen home fires as serious enough to include it as the 2015 National Patient Safety Goal (NPSG) 15.02.01. It states a home care organization must “Identify patient safety areas: Find out if there are any risks for patients who are getting oxygen. For example, fires in the patient’s home.” (The Joint Commission, 2015). This work is a review of available literature on the issue, its link to nursing administration, the significance to quality and safe nursing practice, as well as potential opportunities for improvement and recommendations for strategies to improve the safety of patients, families, and nursing staff. According to 2003 – 2006 data from the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s National Injury Surveillance System, medical oxygen in the home was a factor in and average of 1,190 thermal burns seen annually in U.S. emergency rooms (Galligan, et al., 2015). Smoking is the leading cause in these incidents and several studies suggest that the incidence of burn
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Mulloy, D. F., & Hughes, R. G. (2008). Patient safety & quality: an evidence-based handbook for nurses. Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. Retrieved from http://www.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK2678/
(2013) states that oxygen is a commonly used drug, yet is one of the most poorly prescribed, with some data suggesting the over 50% of patients are put on oxygen without a prescription and levels are not titrated appropriately. One study found that most nurses fail to sign oxygen prescriptions on drug rounds and fail to titrate oxygen to the prescribed target levels, although all nurses reported high levels of confidence in titrating oxygen. This study implemented interventions such as using oxygen “hangers” to raise awareness which improved these figures dramatically therefore having a major impact on patient safety (Dimock et al., 2013).
The Occupational Safety and Health Act purpose is to assure that individuals are working in safe environments. OSHA has been around for over 40 years and has come with many advantages as well as disadvantages. According to OSHA, “nursing homes and personal care facilities has had one the highest injury and illness rates, workers have faced numerous amounts of health hazards, and disorders compared to other work places”. These obstacles occurring in the health care work force has lead to the NYS Safe Patient Handling Act. This act consists of programs ensuring workers are better educated on how to prevent injuries, reduce disorders and improve quality of care towards patients.
Pressure ulcers continue to be a prevalent issue in the health care system and causes “pain, slow recovery from morbid conditions, infection and death” (Kwong, Pang, Aboo, & Law, 2009, p. 2609). In the field of nursing turning and repositioning patients is a well-known nursing intervention to prevent development of pressure ulcers. However, many hospitals and facilities still neglect to apply this as a standard policy. This gives room for nurses and nursing aides to overlook the importance of this intervention resulting in increased pressure ulcer development. The purpose of turning and repositioning patients is to prevent oxygen
Flames of evolution in patient care have been fanned into a wholesome revolution in the nature of nursing care due to the ever changing healthcare needs and demands of patients. This has led to a paradigm shift from generalized patient care to a patient centered approach. The increase in interaction and individualized patient management has improved healthcare delivery. However, on the flipside, this has not come with new challenges. Healthcare providers are increasingly being exposed to new health hazards as new and sophisticated treatment approaches are developed. Injuries due to sharps are of significance in nursing practice. The International Healthcare Workers Safety Center (2010) reports that an average of 27.97 per 100 licensed beds sharps injuries occurred in 2007 while in 2008 17.2 per 100 licensed beds sharps injuries were recorded. According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2010), 385,000 healthcare workers are injured due to sharps annually in the United States. This puts the healthcare personnel at risk of contracting infections such as Hepatitis C and B from contaminated objects. In regard to this concept, this paper will explore sharps safety at the clinical site with a view of using evidence based practice to creating awareness on the need for sharps safety in hospital settings.
We then look at the errors of hazards that occurred in the Mr. B scenario. Though we can say understaffing may have contributed to Mr. B’s demise, we cannot blame understaffing. This scenario is regrettably connected to inattentive nursing practice. It is clear that respiratory therapist was in the building and
As many of the service users within the hospital may already be in a vulnerable state, the exposure to smoke may worsen their condition if not addressed quickly. Some of the effects of smoke exposure to a service user already suffering from respiratory problems can include the inability to breathe normally, excessive cough with or without mucus, discomfort in the chest and wheezing or shortness of breath. All problems that can lead to more serious problems if not looked at and fixed as quickly as possible. Another problem that can occur during the case of a fire, can include a safety breach. When the fire alarm is set off inside the hospital it is important to follow the procedure and get everybody to
healthcare organization accrediting bodies, and to maintain credibility with patients and peers alike, must adhere to the National Patient Safety Goals. As stated by Ulrich and Kear (2014), "Not only are nurses responsible for providing safe patient care, we are also responsible for creating an environment in which others can provide safe patient care, and for being the last line of defense when needed between the patient and potential harm. Having a deep understanding of patient safety and patient safety culture allows nurses to be the leaders we need to be in ensuring that our patients are always
The manager of Associate in Nursing operating theater raised issues with the organisation’s Ohio consultantconcerning the health and safety of employees and their exposure to surgical smoke. New workers had highlighted this issue, that had not been raised antecedently.
In the 1990’s, the American Nurses Association (ANA) identified indicators which brought about the development of the Nursing’s Patient Safety and Quality Initiative (Miller & Soule, 2008). These indicators were specific to nursing,
Errors pervade in our lives whether it is our home, in our workplace, or in our society. The effects of healthcare errors have impacted all our lives either directly or indirectly. Patient safety and quality care are at the core of healthcare system which strongly depends upon nurses. “To achieve goals in patient safety and quality, thereby improve healthcare, nurses must assume the leadership role. Nurses need to ensure that they and other healthcare providers center healthcare on patients and their families. Even though the quality and safety of healthcare is heavily influenced by the complex nature
New approaches need to be available since there is an upward correlation between time and knowledge from advances in technology. A wide range of actions such as refining nursing training, further educating nurses about environment safety and how to manage risk situations such as ‘infection control, safe use of medicines, equipment safety, safe clinical practice and safe environment of care’ (WHO 2010; WHPA 2002), need to be addressed so that gradual improvements and altercations can be made relating to the patients’ safety (Vaismoradi ;
Nursing and healthcare continue to change on a daily basis. The one thing that has remained constant during these changes is maintaining the safety of our patients. By maintaining their safety, nurses must ensure that they are keeping up-to-date with the changes in technology now being introduced in healthcare, new and emerging diseases, new equipment, and changes in treatment modalities. One such responsibility is ensuring that nurses do not operate equipment they were not oriented to or trained to use in an effort to prevent injury patients. Nurses and other healthcare professionals are being held accountable for practicing within their scope of practice based on their licensure regulations, and the company policies and procedures. Therefore, nurses are responsible for their professional growth and practice by ensuring that they comply with the necessary standards required by their profession.
Many seniors have been using their oxygen more frequently. One client has told her he is coughing since the fire began. The geriatric nurse, Karen, who works at the center has advised many seniors to stay indoors and away from the irritants in the air. She has provided health screenings and education to