Patient Safety

The Hospital of Central Connecticut encourages communications between healthcare workers and patients about patient safety & quality of care. If you have questions or concerns about any aspects of your or your loved one's care, please ask.

Patient Safety

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Patient Identification

All patients receive an ID bracelet at admission that lists their name and other appropriate information. Physicians, nurses and other care givers carefully check bracelets and charts before any procedures, tests or administration of medication.

How You Can Help

  • Be sure the information on your (or your loved one's) ID bracelet is correct.
  • Notify Admitting staff and your physician or nurse of any allergies, other medical conditions or special circumstances. You will receive a supplemental bracelet with this information.
  • If you do not receive a patient ID bracelet, or if your bracelet falls off or is damaged, please let your nurse know immediately.
  • Before taking any medication or undergoing any test or procedure, it's OK to ask your caregiver to check your ID bracelet.

Bar Coding

Depending on where patients stay while in the hospital, they might have a bar code on their patient ID bracelets. 

It's part of a system the hospital uses to verify important information about patients and their treatment, including their medications. 

To confirm patients are receiving the correct medication, the system uses:

  • Bar Code Technology (Scanning)
  • Electronic Medication Administration Record (EMAR)
  • Positive Patient Identification (PPID)

EMAR

EMAR, a computerized program, will list each patient's medication profile, including what medications they're on. Before a medication is given, the nurse or respiratory therapist will use a small electronic device to scan bar codes on the ID wristband and on medications.

This will be done to ensure patients receive what are called the "Five Rights" of patient medication administration:

  1. The Right Patient,
  2. Receives the Right Medication,
  3. In the Right Dose,
  4. Via the Right Route,
  5. At the Right Time

The nurse or therapist will receive a warning on the computer if there is any mismatch and will take action to ensure these five rights are met. It's just one more way we're working to ensure our patients' safety. If you or your loved ones have any questions about the bar-coding program, please ask!

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Time-Out Procedure

Before surgeries and other invasive procedures, the care-giving team will have a "time out" to verify they have the correct patient, procedure and procedure site. 

They may ask you to verify some or all of this information, also. It may seem strange to you to be asked these questions, but this extra verification is one more step in ensuring your safety. 

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Dispensing Medication

Members of the care-giving team verify that the correct patient is receiving the correct medication by checking the patient's ID bracelet against his or her medical record. Pharmacy and Nursing staff also double-check medication orders before the first dose is administered.

How You Can Help

  • Bring a list of medications you're taking with you to the hospital, including over-the-counter medications as well as prescriptions. Also bring a list of vitamins, supplements or herbal products you're taking.
  • Alert your nurse, physician or other caregivers of medication allergies.

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Hand Hygiene

Following hand hygiene procedures is an important way to prevent the spread of infection. All hospital staff receive extensive, ongoing education about proper hand hygiene.

In addition to soap and water, dispensers with alcohol-based hand rubs are available for staff and visitors.

How You Can Help

  • Before and after visiting your loved one in the hospital, use the Purell alcohol-based hand rub dispenser outside each patient's room.
  • Please follow any other infection control procedures outlined by your loved one's care team and do not visit when you are ill.
  • Follow respiratory hygiene/cough etiquette procedures, particularly during cold and flu season.

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Patient Safety & Quality