Phlebotemy: ID Bands

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Posted on 20th April 2010 by admin in Uncategorized

Patient Identification is the process of verifying a patient’s identity, and is the most important step in speciment collection.  Obtaining a specimen from the wrong patient can have serious, even fatal consequences, especially specimens for type and crossmatch prior to blood transfusion.  Misidentifuing a patient or speciemn can be grounds for dismissal of the person responsible and can even lead to a malpractice suit against a phlebotemy specialist…so use caution.  Be sure to verify Name and Date of Birth.  When identifying a patient, ask the patient to state his or her full name and identificaton number and/or date of birth.  For example, never say, “Are you Mrs. Smith?” A person who is very ill, hard of hearing, or sedated may say “yes” to anything.  Use a “memory jogger” such as having a patient spell an unusual name, or comment in some positive way about a name, to help remember that you verified it.  You should make sure that the patient’s response matches the information on the requisition.  When checking identification bracelets, once you have made sure that the patient’s response matches the information on the requisition, proceed to check the patient’s ID band which is usually found on the wrist.  Inpatients are normally required to wear an ID band.  The typical ID band lists the patient’s name and hospital identification number or medical record number.  Additional information includes the patient’s birth date or age, room number, and bed designation, and physician’s name.  ID bands are an important tool for phlebotemy specialists to consult.  We will expand more on this topic tomorrow.

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