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READER TIPS

Cardiology practice makes staff safety a priority

A Davenport, IA, cardiology practice with 40 providers faced a major challenge, one that had the potential to affect the safety of practice staff.

“Like most medical offices, we ask our patients to bring all their medications with them to the office and our rooming staff reconciles their medications at each office visit,” says Marcia Brunsvold, supervisor of patient services.

The problem, she explains, is that patients bring their medications in a variety of bags, boxes, and suitcases.

This meant staff had to rummage through these various carryalls to retrieve the medications.

So, what’s the problem?

“Recently, one of our medical assistants reached into a bag full of medications and was stuck with an uncapped, used insulin syringe,” Brunsvold tells Medical Office Manager.

Enough was enough.

“In an effort to protect our staff against future incidents, we purchased inexpensive small plastic baskets for each exam room,” Brunsvold says.

The staff now empties the medications into the basket.

“As a result, they are able to easily see what is in the basket, and to retrieve medications without concern for their safety,” Brunsvold explains.

In the past, staff had found “all kinds of things in the patients’ medication bags, from bugs to used Band-Aids,” she says. “They are pleased with the solution.”


Medical Office Manager wants to send you $100. Tell us how you solved a problem, implemented a successful program – or share any idea we can use in our Reader Tips column and we’ll send you $100. Contact barb@plainlanguagemedia.com


Related reading:

Set aside two hours for staff and keep interruptions in check


Separate room for schedulers calms front office chaos


How to get paid for filling out patient forms


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