Talk to the Veterans Crisis Line now
U.S. flag
An official website of the United States government

Health Services Research & Development

Go to the ORD website
Go to the QUERI website

HSR&D Citation Abstract

Search | Search by Center | Search by Source | Keywords in Title

Safety huddles to proactively identify and address electronic health record safety.

Menon S, Singh H, Giardina TD, Rayburn WL, Davis BP, Russo EM, Sittig DF. Safety huddles to proactively identify and address electronic health record safety. Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association : JAMIA. 2017 Mar 1; 24(2):261-267.

Dimensions for VA is a web-based tool available to VA staff that enables detailed searches of published research and research projects.

If you have VA-Intranet access, click here for more information

VA staff not currently on the VA network can access Dimensions by registering for an account using their VA email address.
   Search Dimensions for VA for this citation
* Don't have VA-internal network access or a VA email address? Try searching the free-to-the-public version of Dimensions


Objective: Methods to identify and study safety risks of electronic health records (EHRs) are underdeveloped and largely depend on limited end-user reports. "Safety huddles" have been found useful in creating a sense of collective situational awareness that increases an organization's capacity to respond to safety concerns. We explored the use of safety huddles for identifying and learning about EHR-related safety concerns. Design: Data were obtained from daily safety huddle briefing notes recorded at a single midsized tertiary-care hospital in the United States over 1 year. Huddles were attended by key administrative, clinical, and information technology staff. We conducted a content analysis of huddle notes to identify what EHR-related safety concerns were discussed. We expanded a previously developed EHR-related error taxonomy to categorize types of EHR-related safety concerns recorded in the notes. Results: On review of daily huddle notes spanning 249 days, we identified 245 EHR-related safety concerns. For our analysis, we defined EHR technology to include a specific EHR functionality, an entire clinical software application, or the hardware system. Most concerns (41.6%) involved " EHR technology working incorrectly, " followed by 25.7% involving " EHR technology not working at all. " Concerns related to "EHR technology missing or absent" accounted for 16.7%, whereas 15.9% were linked to " user errors ." Conclusions: Safety huddles promoted discussion of several technology-related issues at the organization level and can serve as a promising technique to identify and address EHR-related safety concerns. Based on our findings, we recommend that health care organizations consider huddles as a strategy to promote understanding and improvement of EHR safety.

Questions about the HSR&D website? Email the Web Team

Any health information on this website is strictly for informational purposes and is not intended as medical advice. It should not be used to diagnose or treat any condition.