Danny T. Y. Wu, PhD has won a grant from the AAMI Foundation to develop and evaluate a machine learning algorithm to more accurately detect pediatric weight entry errors. The algorithm is a next step in developing a computerized medication safety system that can stop the medication ordering process to prevent harm.
Wu is an Assistant Professor of Biomedical Informatics at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine and Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. He and his research team were awarded $40,000 by the AAMI Foundation under the Mary K. Logan Research Awards Program for 2018.
“In a pediatric environment, where many medication doses are based on weight, a medication error is possible if a wrong weight is entered for a patient. Yet, kids with severe conditions can have unusual growth patterns, so automated identification of weight errors is difficult,” said Wu in the release.
“We have developed a computerized medication safety system, but at this point we need to improve the system’s positive predictive value,” he added.
Wu will bring machine learning expertise to bear on this deceptively complex problem.
“We plan to conduct a pilot test to demonstrate the effectiveness of our algorithm,” Wu said. “In the long term, we hope this work will help other pediatric health institutions reduce medication errors and improve patient safety.”
A second grant was awarded by AAMI to a Brigham and Women’s Hospital research team led by Kumiko O. Schnock, RN, PhD, to improve medication administration safety in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU).
AAMI (www.aami.org) is a nonprofit organization of approximately 7,000 healthcare technology professionals working to support the healthcare community in the development, management, and use of safe and effective healthcare technology. Read the AAMI Foundation press release.