Use of medical emergency team (MET) responses to detect medical errors

R S Braithwaite, M A DeVita, R Mahidhara, R L Simmons, S Stuart, M Foraida et al.
Quality & Safety in Health Care 2004, 13 (4): 255-9

BACKGROUND: No previous studies have investigated whether medical emergency team (MET) responses can be used to detect medical errors.

OBJECTIVES: To determine whether review of MET responses can be used as a surveillance method for detecting medical errors.

METHODS: Charts of all patients receiving MET responses during an 8 month period were reviewed by a hospital based Quality Improvement Committee to establish if the clinical deterioration that prompted the MET response was associated with a medical error (defined as an adverse event that was preventable with the current state of medical knowledge). Medical errors were categorized as diagnostic, treatment, or preventive errors using a descriptive typology based on previous published reports.

RESULTS: Three hundred and sixty four consecutive MET responses underwent chart review and 114 (31.3%) were associated with medical errors: 77 (67.5%) were categorized as diagnostic errors, 68 (59.6%) as treatment errors, and 30 (26.3%) as prevention errors. Eighteen separate hospital care processes were identified and modified as a result of this review, 10 of which involved standardization.

CONCLUSIONS: MET review may be used for surveillance to detect medical errors and to identify and modify processes of care that underlie those errors.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Related Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"