Research article receives AAMI Award

The Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation (AAMI) has announced the 2023 outstanding articles in AAMI’s peer-reviewed journal, BI&T (Biomedical Instrumentation & Technology) or in the AAMI News newsletter. AAMI’s Publications Editorial Board makes the awards decisions.

“The topics covered by this year’s AAMI Publication Award winners run the gamut from the cutting edge of healthcare technology with AI, to the long term, ongoing challenges of medical device cybersecurity and alarm management. All provide essential, grounded insight for those working with health technology today,” said Gavin Stern, MPH, MS, editor in chief and director of publications at AAMI. “Congratulations to each of this year’s winners for sharing their expertise and for their contribution to advancing safety in health technology. And thank you to all of our contributors who lent a piece of their minds to AAMI publications—through authorship, providing ideas, peer review, or just by being a frequent reader.”

“State of Science in Alarm System Safety: Implications for Researchers, Vendors, and Clinical Leaders” was awarded Best Research Article. Shouhuai Xu, the Gallogly Endowed Engineering Chair in Cybersecurity and Professor in computer science, was one of the authors.

The BI&T article summarizes the state of research on alarm system safety based on eight dimensions of a sociotechnical model for studying HIT in complex adaptive healthcare systems. The summary and recommendations were guided by available systematic reviews on the topic, interventional studies published between January 2019 and February 2022, and recommendations and evidence- based practice interventions published by professional organizations.

The article suggests implications to help researchers respond to the gap in science related to alarm safety, help vendors design safe monitoring systems, and help clinical leaders apply evidence-based strategies to improve alarm safety in their settings. Physiologic monitors in intensive care units—the devices most commonly used in complex care environments and associated with the highest number of alarms and deaths—are the focus of the work.

“Our team and team members have, for years, contributed to the advancement of alarm system and patient safety science using an interdisciplinary research and implementation model,” Azizeh K. Sowan, PhD, RN, MSN, MSDA, MBA, FAAN, professor and department chair at the College of Nursing at the University of Central Florida Academic Health Sciences Center, said. “During this journey, we have collaborated with Philips Health Care and the Alarm Safety Education Task Force through AAMI’s National Coalition on Alarm Safety Management.”

“Our research produced instruments to assess alarm fatigue, a statistical code using R programming language to maximize efficiency in analyzing the complex logged data from physiologic monitors, educational toolkits for physiologic monitor use and alarm systems safety, international collaboration and coalition, and multiple publications in high-impact journals,” Sowan added. “The study that received this award highlights the importance of the interdisciplinary research, data science, and the need for a team approach to improve patient safety in complex adaptive healthcare systems. Our success would not have been possible without the generous financial support from the San Antonio Life Sciences Institute, University Health at San Antonio, the School of Nursing at University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, and the University of Texas at San Antonio; and the engagement of nurses and nurse educators from University Health.”

Authors: Azizeh K. Sowan, PhD, RN, MSN, MSDA, MBA, FAAN, professor and department chair at the College of Nursing at the University of Central Florida Academic Health Sciences Center; Nancy Staggers, PhD, RN, FAAN, professor in the School of Nursing and Department of Biomedical Informatics at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City; Charles Reed, PhD, RN, CNRN, vice president and associate chief nursing officer at the Center for Clinical Excellence and Ancillary Services at the University Health System in San Antonio; Tommye Austin, PhD, MBA, RN, NEA-BC, senior vice president for patient care systems and chief nurse executive for BJC HealthCare; Qian Chen, PhD, assistant professor in the Department of Computer Science at the University of Texas at San Antonio; Shouhuai Xu, PhD, professor in cybersecurity in the Department of Computer Science at the University of Colorado in Colorado Springs; and Emma Lopez, librarian in the School of Nursing at the University of Texas Health at San Antonio.

Read the original press release here.