Published by: Diario Enfermero Edited by: General Council of Official Associations of Nursing of Spain


ÁNGEL M. GREGORIS.- Aiming the vital signs, the tension or oxygen saturation by hand and then transcribing it cleanly in the patient's history can bring human errors, which lead to serious health problems. Trying to avoid these problems and get as few errors as possible is, or should be, one of the main objectives of all hospitals and health centers.

The Hospital of Santa Creu i Sant Pau, in Barcelona, is aware of this situation and to avoid these failures, it has monitors that automate the data and add them directly to the file. "We use monitors in which when the nurses come to look at the patient's vital signs and by bluetooth it turns around at that moment. Besides, we also record the entry and exit of liquid balances, it allows us to ask the patient at the foot of the bed if he has made a bowel movement, if he has vomited ... and he does not have to miss any information along the way ", says Paqui Rojas, nurse of Hematology Clinic of the center.

Meritxell Cucala, deputy of Innovation and Projects of the Nursing Directorate of Sant Pau, says that this measure avoids errors, especially in the identification of the professional and user. "With a card we identify ourselves and the patient. Before we wrote down the constants on a piece of paper, we put them in our pocket and when we could, we passed them to the clinical record, which could mean errors in the transcription of the data, "explains Cucala. What began with the measurement of mechanical constants, has continued with valuation scales, water balances, medication administration and other needs that nurses had.

The supervisor of the Unit of Clinical Hematology of the hospital, Iria González, emphasizes that the monitors were introduced like a normal TV and then this new utility was seen. "This way it's instantaneous and very fast and we do not have to wait for it to load in the history," he says. Also, Paqui Rojas recognizes that many times until you can sit on the computer to pass the data to the best have elapsed three hours since you have assessed the patient. "By the time it takes so much is not recorded and neither the doctor can see how the constants were or we can not either until we pass them. That's how everything is automatic at the moment, "he says.

Many of the patients have experienced the transition from paper to digital and they welcome the initiatives that are expanding in the hospital. "Three years ago I suffered acute leukemia and I have had income since 2014. Just when I was admitted, I saw the change in how the nurses wrote everything by hand to how the information went directly to the screens. Sometimes they came back because they had lost the paper and now with this machine everything is very quick and easy", says Andrea, one of the first patients to use the screens in the Hematology Unit.

In bone marrow transplants, for example, it is a breakthrough because it allows nurses to have the patient monitored and may be taking the constants very often throughout the intervention. "The transplant can last up to two hours and then we take the constants and go charging directly. So you can do the evolution at the foot of the bed, sitting and not all the time transcribing it", says Iria González.