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Improving the safety of continuously infused fluids in the emergency department


Correspondence: Hyun Soo Chung, Department of Emergency Medicine, Yonsei University College of Medicine, 211 Eonju-ro, Gangnam-gu, Seoul 135-720, Korea. Email:


When an unexpected crisis happens to patients with multiple continuous infusion fluids in the emergency department (ED), nurses need to recognize specific medication promptly and accurately for appropriate action. This study aims to evaluate the efficiency of colour-coded label system in ED fluids during an uneventful crisis simulation event. Promptness and accuracy of finding the correct fluid between the pre- and postintervention in each three groups (emergency nurses, intensive care unit nurses and nursing students) for three different scenarios (potassium, heparin and normal saline scenario) were assessed. Time improvement for all three groups from pre- to postintervention for all three scenarios were statistically significant (P < 0.001). There were no incorrect fluids indicated by all three groups of participants at postintervention analysis. Colour-coded labelling system in a simulated environment significantly improved the promptness and accuracy of finding the correct fluid from multiple infused continuous fluids.