Ensuring safety of patients receiving sedation for procedures: evaluation of clinical practice guidelines.

S. S. Poe, M. T. Nolan, D. Dang, J. Schauble, D. G. Oechsle, L. Kress, J. Larkins, E. R. Feroli, A. Walker, L. G. Maxwell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: In 1995 The Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore convened an interdisciplinary task force to evaluate sedation practices, create a comprehensive set of sedation guidelines, and evaluate patient safety outcomes following guideline implementation. METHODOLOGY: Baseline data were collected on all procedures in which sedation was administered by a nonanesthesiologist for a 6-month period, using scanning technology to automate data entry. Sedation practices were reviewed, and four critical events were examined: unresponsiveness, obstructed airway, airway placement, and cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). In 1998 data collection procedures were repeated to evaluate the impact of the guidelines on sedation practices and patient safety outcomes. RESULTS: In 1995 sedation practices varied, and one or more critical events occurred in 45 (1.4%) of 3,255 procedures. Steps taken included development and dissemination of a clinical sedation guideline, including monitoring criteria to guide nonanesthesiologists, and evaluation planning. In 1998 sedation practices were more consistent. One or more critical events occurred in 50 (1.6%) of 3,134 procedures, representing a small increase in critical events from 1995. More events of unresponsiveness were identified, and no event required CPR. Although not statistically significant, this trend suggests that critical events were being identified earlier, preventing patients from progressing to a more serious event requiring CPR. Steps taken included further refinement of clinical practice guidelines and establishment of ongoing monitoring. CONCLUSIONS: Standardization of sedation practices is a complex and resource-intensive activity, requiring ongoing oversight and monitoring. Commitment from medical staff, nursing staff, and administration is essential to successful implementation of sedation guidelines.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)28-41
Number of pages14
JournalThe Joint Commission journal on quality improvement
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Leadership and Management


Dive into the research topics of 'Ensuring safety of patients receiving sedation for procedures: evaluation of clinical practice guidelines.'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this