Alarm Fatigue in EMS

Fatigue within EMS is usually described in terms of a provider’s ability to get enough sleep. But there are other types of fatigue in health care, the study of which has remained siloed within brick and mortar facilities, resulting in a generic lack of focus from the EMS industry.

These types of fatigue are real, and they have real, sometimes deadly, consequences.

Defined as “sensory overload when clinicians are exposed to an excessive number of alarms,” alarm fatigue has become so widely accepted within health care as a patient safety risk that the Joint Commission named it as their 2014 National Patient Safety Goal.

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