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Ventilator Alarm Safety and Fatigue

presented by Karsten Roberts, MSc, RRT, RRT-ACCS, FAARC

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Disclosure Statement:

Financial: Karsten Roberts receives compensation from MedBridge for this course. There is no financial interest beyond the production of this course.

Nonfinancial: Karsten Roberts has no competing nonfinancial interests or relationships with regard to the content presented in this course.

Satisfactory completion requirements: All disciplines must complete learning assessments to be awarded credit, no minimum score required unless otherwise specified within the course.

MedBridge is committed to accessibility for all of our subscribers. If you are in need of a disability-related accommodation, please contact [email protected]. We will process requests for reasonable accommodation and will provide reasonable accommodations where appropriate, in a prompt and efficient manner.

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Video Runtime: 14 Minutes; Learning Assessment Time: 24 Minutes

There is a lack of literature describing how best to address ventilator alarms. If not properly set and addressed, ventilator alarms carry the risk of causing serious harm or death. Additionally, there is a lack of standardization and specificity in the setting of ventilator alarms. Ventilator alarms must be set to minimize alarm fatigue, and settings are most often based on individual patient condition. When assessing patients, respiratory therapists determine the appropriateness of alarm settings for individual patients. This course will support clinicians by identifying issues regarding the number of audible alarms in the ICU. The course will address difficulties in setting and addressing mechanical ventilator alarms.

Meet Your Instructor

Karsten Roberts, MSc, RRT, RRT-ACCS, FAARC

Karsten J. Roberts, MSc, RRT, RRT-ACCS, FAARC, is a respiratory therapist with nearly two decades of experience. He earned a baccalaureate degree from Boise State University and a master's degree from Northeastern University. Karsten has been honored as both a Speciality Practitioner of the Year (2019) and a Fellow of the American Association for Respiratory…

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Chapters & Learning Objectives

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1. The Burden of Alarm Frequency

Audio and visual alarms alert clinicians to possible sources of patient harm. This chapter covers human, organizational, and technological factors that lead to alarm-related hazards and fatigue.

2. Alarm Fatigue

When too many alarms are present, clinicians may be desensitized to alarms. In this chapter, learners will become familiar with the risk to patients if alarms are not addressed in a timely manner.

3. Setting Alarms for Patient Safety

This chapter covers the importance of setting alarms appropriately to patient condition. Although there are common alarm settings among different ventilators, there is limited evidence as to how alarms should be set.

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